ARTIST: Holy Monitor

RELEASE: II

RELEASE DATE: October 12th 2018

RECORD COMPANY: Blackspin Records

Blistering Athens-based experimental psych/kraut rock collective ‘Holy Monitor’ wowed us back in early 2017 with their debut self-titled full length release absolutely filled to the brim with luscious soundscapes that pull together different disciplines to create an otherworldly sonic vibe charged with glistening hypnotics that are all collectively drenched in a woozy kind of psychedelic abandonment. ‘Holy Monitor’ first pinged our radar with their very impressive ‘Ongakubaka Records’ released ‘Golden Light​/​Aeolus’, a compilation containing both of the bands previously released (only digital & in a ltd edition cassette) EP’s and since then we’ve been firmly on board with what they create musically. From rhythmic krautrock to blissed out space rock and on into modern day psych permutations, ‘Holy Monitor’ do not disappoint. Now the band have unleashed ‘II’, their monstrous sophomore full length that builds on what the band have already manifested, a wonderful, no nonsense lysergic tinged sonic assault on the cranium. ‘II’ was officially released back on October 12th 2018 via the good folks over at Backspin Records in Greece and is available to buy/download right now from holymonitor.bandcamp.com

‘Fields Of Mars’ drones into existence swirling within a squally wave of extraterrestrial sonics and ambient hued sound waves. It builds as it manoeuvres itself into striking position unleashing fizzing lines of guitar melded with the repetitive pitter patter of cymbal noise. There’s a distinct tinge of 60’s psych undulating through the guitar sound that is thoroughly addictive, it adds to the overall atmospherics of the track and tunes the listener in at an early stage. Menacing swells of synth join forces with slow moving percussion, tumbling lines of bass and throb of reverberation as we’re scooped up and ferried along brilliantly with the impressive hypnotic sonic melee. As opening tracks go ‘Fields Of Mars’ is absolutely immense. Up next, ‘Animal Heart’ charges into the ether drenched in a garage tinged golden hue. Rocking kraut like percussion keeps a steady back beat as all around it swirls through heady clouds of futuristic neo-psychedelia. Fizzing synths, repetitive guitars and cascading lines of bass are the order of the day catching the listener off-guard with mesmerising instrumentation that collectively loop and arc throughout the sonic arena whilst the lines of vocals tie everything together perfectly. ‘Animal Heart’ is a triumph and a definite album highlight for me.

‘Cirrus’ begins pounding on a repetitive percussive assault before swirling lines of synth and captivating lines of guitar arrive pulling the distinctive throb of bass into the mix and melding into a perfect accompaniment for another melodic vocal. Catchy chord structures and impressive hooks lift and twist the track perfectly as we’re led into that magnificent instrumental break and on into the tracks sublime finale whilst ‘Hunter’s Moon’ conjures up subtle elements of of psych folk as it rumbles and shudders on a brilliant drum track accompanied by enchanting instrumentation and addictive vocalisations all drenched in a kind of lysergic tinged psychedelic abandonment. Up next, ‘Spirits Of The Wild’ swirls through clouds of deliciously hypnotic sonic fare filled with animalistic sampling, shimmering tambourines and shamanistic tendencies. It moves like a living organism, pulsing and undulating as one huge sonic form, dancing and twirling through a multitude instrumental connotations laced with reverberating frequencies that shimmer and shine. There’s a brilliant cultural feel here, a snapshot if you will of the psychedelic side of Greece. It overpowers this listener and is both captivating and exhilarating all at once.

‘Soothing Water’, the albums penultimate piece, drones into existence trapped in a cyclonic whirlwind of fizzing synth and the repetitive pull of those pounding drums. Throbbing lines of bass frequencies intertwine with soaring lines of melodic guitar, ushering in another futuristically sounding vocalisation. Busy lines of lead guitar enter the mix, following the duel lines of vocal perfectly and adding an intimate atmospheric feel to proceedings as all around them explodes into a cacophony of magical sounds. ‘Soothing Water’ is absolutely immense and another album highlight. ‘The Way Out’ closes out proceedings on this mesmeric album. Originally appearing on the bands digital EP ‘Golden Light’, ‘The Way Out’ epitomises that “Holy Monitor” sound. Like a pulsating beacon of musical promiscuity, this track ripples outwardly, like some magical pre-ordained mantra, meandering through throbbing bass lines coupled with hypnotic rhythmic percussive patterns, surging synth swells and a magnificent vocal attack. It’s an acid drenched modern psych gem and a firm favourite of mine that closes out another impressive release by one of my favourite bands around today ……… Bravo ‘Holy Monitor’.

5/5

LINKS:

facebook.com/holymonitor

holymonitor.bandcamp.com

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Del Chaney - (Author Photo)

Del Chaney has spent the last six years dedicating his time to uncovering the best artists in the unsigned or small independent label based shoegaze, ethereal dream pop, post-punk & 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 (Now On Hiatus). 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 genres 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.