ARTIST: Ulrika Spacek
RELEASE: The Album Paranoia
RELEASE DATE: 5th February 2016
RECORD COMPANY: Tough Love / Lefse Records
Formed in Berlin but now residing in London, Rhys Edwards and Rhys Williams aka ‘Ulrika Spacek’ began their tentative first steps in what would be a two year journey to finish their debut album entitled ‘The Album Paranoia’ back in 2014. Employing the help of three skilled musicians & friends they embarked on sonic journey that would reap them immense rewards. With a sound that swerves between alt-rock & krautrock whilst taking a trip through downright fuzzed up lo-fi brilliance, ‘Ulrika Spacek’ create hazy impressive soundscapes that are sonically worthy of your ears. ‘The Album Paranoia’ was officially released via ‘Tough Love Records (EU) & LEFSE Records (USA) back on the 5th February 2016.
The album opens up with ‘I Don’t Know’, a fuzzy swirling triumphant track that loops & arcs through addictive reverberating guitars intertwined with glorious psych tinged effects and a steadying drum progression that holds that stunning vocal aloft like a king sitting atop a mountain of golden sound. Track two, ‘Porcelain’ oozes alt-rock splendour with whirling repetitive guitars and another impressive vocal performance. ‘Circa 1954’ lives in a beautiful shimmering experimental ambient world while ‘Strawberry Glue’ jangles & struts like a sonic peacock before opening up into a glorious fuzzy alternative masterpiece. Track five, ‘Beta Male’ stands up there with some of the great modern day psych tracks. Reminiscent at times of ‘Fuzz Club Records’ own ‘Throw Down Bones’ with its hypnotic swirling maelstrom of sound that builds into a fuzzy multifaceted sonic whirlwind. ‘Beta Male’ is probably my favourite track on this entire release. Very cool! Up next,‘NK’ is a slow but sludgy psych tinged monster with a lazy ‘Sub Pop’ styled effected vocal line and a very impressive break that builds & builds forever.
We’re back on a subtle alt-rock vibe with ‘Ultra-Vivid’. This track is full of melodic melancholy with beautifully intricate guitar lines, gorgeous synth swells and an effortlessly striped back vocal take. ‘She’s A Cult’ screams ‘Radiohead’ from its very first distorted chord structure while ‘There’s A Little Passing Cloud In You’ shakes the sonic ether with is psychedelic flavourings dripping with repetitive guitars, throbbing bass line & a brilliant drum progression that collectively leads us into a false sense of security before opening up & exploding into a massive cacophony of sound.
The albums closer ‘Airportism’ is reminiscent of latter day ‘Radiohead’ with its beautifully delicate vocal lines accompanied by that addictively melodic guitar progression and a lazy drum pattern. A perfect finale to an overall impressive debut album. Recommended listening for fans of MBV, Television, Pavement, Sonic Youth, Radiohead & Deerhunter.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Del Chaney has spent the last four years not only fronting popular experimental Irish based electronic duo Analogue Wave but also dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the unsigned or small independent label based shoegaze, ethereal dream pop, post punk, post rock & modern psych rock from all over the globe & reviewing them for this blog – The Primal Music Blog. He is also a contributing writer for The Sound Of Confusion. His other arm – Primal Radio – has gained considerable respect from bands and promoters alike since its conception in 2013 & has helped him in actively promoting a genre of music that he is passionate about. Hailing from Dublin, Ireland, he is a keen Vinyl Collector, Tattoo Fan & all round good guy! He is a self confessed music freak & is never far away from a studio console or a turntable.