Chlorine Dream - "Mental Weather"
(Chaos Disorder Recordings 2003, CHD 001)
Uploaded to Aural Innovations: January 2004
The forecast is calling for mental weather. And riding in on a storm of wild sounds, Torontoís Chlorine Dream brings us their music, imbued with abundant styles that range from space rock to psychedelic music to heavy alt-rock to ambient and even goth rock. But rather than it being a patchwork creation, on Mental Weather, their debut album, they successfully merge those styles into a unique blend of complex rock that can be sometimes mysteriously murky, sometimes mellow and melancholy, and sometimes wild and freaky.
The album opens with the somber and spacey Autonomy where gloomy guitars and droning vocals drenched in creepy electronics create a dark and shadowy atmosphere. Be My Friend, a harsh and blistering rocker with oddly menacing vocals (considering the title!) is a complete contrast, drawing strongly on both the goth and psych influences. The Nashville to Memphis Dialogue shifts in moods as it progresses, from coolly atmospheric piano and softer guitars that make for perfect midnight drive music until theyíre interrupted by some sudden and searing electric guitar, ultimately culminating in a tasty, upbeat almost jazzy psychedelic jam to finish things off. Ant Colony opens with nearly 4 minutes of Floydian style atmospheres before a moody guitar enters, building on slow layers till the song breaks into a spacey, rhythmic overdrive full of crashing cymbals. Another standout track is the album closer, Stronger, which rises up from the often more solemn mood of the rest of the album to a romping 60ís style psychedelic rave-up, with a hint of gospel flavor coming from the very cool, funky organ and slide guitar.
Chlorine Dreamís sound is diverse and not always immediately accessible, but thatís one of its strong points. Itís the kind of music that grows on you, revealing new dimensions every time you tune into it.
Visit Chlorine Dream at their web site: http://www.chlorine-dream.com.
Reviewed by Jeff Fitzgerald