Seven That Spells – “Superautobahn” (Sulatron Records 2015, LP reissue)

Sulatron reissues this 2012 album on vinyl LP, which by necessity trims some of the track lengths but provides a tasty package for vinyl junkies. Superautobahn is a super special set in that joining Seven That Spells ship captain and guitarist Nico Potocnjak is Acid Mother’s Temple’s Kawabata Makoto on guitar.

Side A opens with The Wall, which has a cool and strange combination of fiery frantic Rock and trippy chanting vocal harmonies. A minimal and oddly percussive piano melody provides a calming melodic counterpoint to the acid industrial noise guitars, which wander snake-like throughout the proceedings as they scream, howl, grind and tear holes in the ozone layer. The Pyramid is next and goes all manic mindfuck right out of the chute, sounding like Red-era King Crimson at a Noise-Psych festival. The guitars are freak flag flyin’ tortured yet are screeching against a solid rocking rhythmic foundation, and here again we have a calming influence in the form of the floating chant vocals. I don’t see a violin in the credits but it sure sounds like one so it must be Nico or Kawabata’s guitar. If there’s such a thing as Noise-Trance then this is it.

Side B consists of the 22 minute The Colossus, which is the same length as it was on the original release. The music is as steadily rocking and rhythmically linear as the first two tracks, and the chant vocals continue to be a distant backdrop presence, yet while the guitars are certainly aggressive they somehow don’t feel like the in-yer-face sonic assault we experienced on the first two tracks. Sure, they screech and howl, but this is a relatively laid back affair, and I really dig the addition of saxophone jamming along with the guitars.

In summary, Superautobahn is a splendid blend of heavy rock, trance and Psychedelic noise-craft, and the influence of Kawabata adds, as you would expect, a twist to the Seven That Spells sound (which has been evolving anyway). If you missed this the first time around and consider owning a vinyl edition a worthwhile tradeoff for two trimmed down track lengths then Sulatron has what you need.

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Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz

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