Recorded in Broen Studio in West Norway January 2015 in the aftermath of a hurricane that ravaged Bergen on New Year’s Eve it’s not hard to see why this album has so much energy: it was fated! Apparently the walls constantly shook from thunder and lightning and downpours outside.
So this second helping from Electric Eye comes after the release of their debut, Pick-up, Lift-up, Space, Time in 2013 and literally picks you up on a voyage where that left off. The band consists of Oystein Braut (guitar, vocals) Njal Clementsen (bass), Anders Bjelland (keyboards) and Oyvind Hegg-Lundee (drums) and hail from Bergen in Norway and their debut was well received especially abroad. They were played on many radio stations including in England, USA, Mexico, Denmark amongst others and they picked up a strong live following too. Since 2013 they’ve toured in Europe and the USA plus been party to SXSW, Iceland Airwaves and Spot Festival in Denmark with a hugely positive response.
Different Sun begins with the monotonic Down to the River which is highly reminiscent of 70s prog rock bands with fuzz guitar and organs. It feels like a spaceship is taking off (Pink Floyd springs to mind). Then mid way it breaks into a lovely fluid piano solo and is dreamy. But no, then the fuzz guitar and organ are back with the vocals “Set the flames on fire…put a stone on fire”.
With All Of This Has Happened Before And Will Happen Again you glide into this psychedelic-infused song full of swirling ambience. The song and the album is evolving into a rich aural landscape. I feel like the proverbial Major Tom in Bowie’s Space Oddity in his “tin can” orbiting the vast desert of space. Mercury Rise has a catchy, radio-friendly feel to it. The energy is vibrant and crackling. It is highly reminiscent of German kraut rock, Hawkwind and the like. “To see the world spin like the Eastern wind” it has a sing-a-long feel”.
Bless’ instrumental opening, with its fuzz guitar drives the listener further into a space voyage. You continue on your orbital journey being further hypnotised with its haziness. Heavy Steps on Desert Floor sounds urgent with its tap, tap rhythm. Once you continue on your journey you are orbiting further around the solar system. The vocals evoke the Moody Blues but this is harder edged, though dreamy at the same time. You are travelling under a merciless sun. Nearly four minutes in this came off as a trippier version of Won’t Get Fooled Again. This is quite a stand-out track to me.
Never Fade Away is punchy and definitive. It’s Talking Heads on acid, taking you deeper into your psyche with a catchy refrain. Part One could be symbolic of the journey home or perhaps the next part of it. It is sombre and leisurely. It seems to signify a goodbye with its wistful feel to it. I pictured a bird soaring over the sea, heading homewards or perhaps to the next part of the adventure.
An album of aural highs and lows, rich and majestic Different Sun is a journey into space and time and it’s taking you along for the ride.
It’s released on 5th February 2016 on Jansen Plateproduksjon Records.