Oresund Space Collective - Good Planets Are Hard To
(Transubstans Records 044)
From Aural Innovations May 2009 update
Oresund Space Collective are not so much a band as an ever-changing club of spacerock jammers from Copenhagen. Despite (or perhaps because of) the revolving door membership, OSC have been prolific in their output, both in terms of quantity and quality. "Good Planets Are Hard To Find" is their fifth album in as many years, and like the others, it clocks in at a maximum disc time of over 79 minutes.
Oresund seem to have only two commandments when it comes to recording material, those being that everything must be improvised and and recorded in just one take (although the sleeve notes admit that there was one solitary overdub on track three, when the synth went out of tune during the jam and a new solo had to be recorded over the top). Band members have such imaginative noms-de-rock as Mogans, Luz, PIB and Dr Space, the sleeve notes indicating that this is the first Space Collective disc not to feature core members of Mantric Muse and Bland Bladen. Instead, new member KG has boarded spaceship OSC, bringing in sitar (amongst other instruments), featured heavily on the opening and closing tracks.
"Good Planets Are Hard To Find" opens with the ten minute title track featuring above-mentioned sitar and a very trippy Eastern vibe. Unlike with other improvisationsal spacerock monsters such as Acid Mothers Temple, Farflung and First Band From Outer Space, the volume controls are not set at eleven with everything louder than everything else. Instead, there is a certain grace and subtlety to the playing, as instruments casually slide in and out of the mix, complementing rather than competing with each other. Thus OSC are less spacerock than head-spinning space fusion, seemingly owing as much to Miles Davis as to Hawkwind.
The nine minute "Space Fountain" and twenty minute "PP746-3" (an enigmatic, if not catchy, title) both have more of a straight ahead "rock" sound, with overdriven guitars layered on top of vintage Hammond B3 and funky bass grooves. "My Heel Has A Beard" (another enigmatic title) is the shortest track on the album, clocking in at a "mere" six minutes, starting off slow and hazy before increasing speed to resemble an instrumental version of Hawkwind's "Uncle Sam's On Mars". Overall, while Oresund Space Collective don't promise to rock your socks off, they will certainly serve as an excellent soundtrack fro drifting through the void.
Check out the band web site at: http://www.oreundspacecollective.com or http://www.myspace.com/oresundspacecollective.com
Check out the Transubstans record label web site at: http://www.myspace.com/transubstans or http://www.recordheaven.net
Reviewed by Pat Albertson