The Lucid Dream

Songs of Lies and Deceit

Written by: BV on 20/10/2013 19:00:26

When The Lucid Dream, a Carlisle-based quartet, first caught my attention it was actually by sheer coincidence. I happened to pick up a 7” release of theirs titled “Hits Me Like I’m Stoned” at a local record store for no other reason than to pay an even amount of money at the cash-registry, seeing as I hate carrying around coins in my pocket. Fortunately, this was to become my first step towards really getting to know the music of these modern-day psychedelics. Their debut full-length album, “Songs of Lies and Deceit”, is a mind-boggling piece of shimmering reverberations, surprisingly fast-paced drones and jangling noisiness.

As evident on opening track “How’s Your Low When You’re Low Alone?”, the soundscape is surprisingly dark and somewhat gloomy for what I had initially imagined to be a swirly, dreamlike bubble or cocoon of jangling psychedelia. Instead, what I actually got was a no holds barred onslaught of brutal droning that could even make my favorite droners in Spökraket and Telstar Sound Drone seem like rookies. So, they’ve got the insanely lo-fi sounding guitars, they’ve got the repetition and they’ve got a break-neck pace to play in. But do they have the dynamic changes necessary for a psych-drone band to really stand out?

Well, with the third track of the album, “Love in My Veins”, the pace does change for the slower and it is quite evident that this track is somewhat more melodically laden than its two predecessors – effectively changing things up, whilst not getting caught up in its own repetitive nature. However, “Love in My Veins” still comes off as a tad too repetitive for its own good, with far too few really interesting moments other than the initial one concerning the highly noticeable tempo change. Luckily though, The Lucid Dream fare much better with the tracks “Heartbreak Girl” and “Heading for the Waves” – the former reminding me a lot of The Zombies, whilst the latter has an ethereal quality to it that is quite hard to come across these days (the most recent example probably being the now defunct The Road to Suicide).

Nearing the end with the seventh out of nine tracks, “A Mind at Ease Is a Mind at Play”, I find myself contemplating what is really going on here – are The Lucid Dream best when they are playing fast-paced drones, or are they best when assuming the position of mellow hallucinogenic dream-makers? The answer lies somewhere in between, as the confounding, dare I say mind-boggling up-tempo tracks serve as the initial impression, quickly grasping my attention with a riff I can nod along to for hours. Then, to go deeper into the music as well as the trip you could supposedly be on, the tracks expand to include far deeper layers of sound, walls of intricacy and soothing sounds and it is then, right there at the cross-section between the break-neck drones and the floating dreamscapes that you find the very best of The Lucid Dream. Their debut has been one I have awaited with great anticipation and as far as debuts go, this is a solid one.


Download: How’s Your Low When You’re Low Alone, Heartbreak Girl, Heading for the Waves
For The Fans Of: The Oscillation, Spökraket, The Road to Suicide

Release Date 05.08.2013
Holy Are You Recordings

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