For most bands simply surviving 25 years is an achievement, but to do so while enjoying a run of consistently stunning records is virtually unheard of. That their latest album finds Motorpsycho sounding as wild and adventurous as ever is testament to the creative flame blazing bright between founder members Bent Sæther and Hans Magnus Ryan and relative newcomer Kenneth Kapstad. With assistance from Dungen guitarist Reine Fiske and string players Ole Henrik Moe and Kari Rønnekleiv, "Behind The Sun" is a freewheeling melting pot of West Coast harmonies, prog-jazz dexterity and power trio muscle. Whether melodic and mellow or blown out and busy, this exhilirating ride through rock´s back pages offers irrefutable proof that these Nordic giants are currently operating at the peak of their powers. 4/5.
"Behind the Sun" is the 15th album from Norway’s Motorpsycho. The band has been going for 25 years and the album is yet another landmark. How they keep it fresh is unfathomable. With Reine Fiske from Sweden’s Dungen integrated into the line-up, Behind the Sun is dreamily soft-edged and psychedelic (a Mellotron helps) yet has the rhythmic heft of Led Zeppelin and ethereal vocal touches of Crosby, Stills & Nash. This melodic, organic rock draws explicitly from the past but remains stunningly crisp (the same trick Jonathan Wilson pulled off with Fanfare). Without a foot placed wrong, Motorpsycho once again restate their role as one of the planet’s most vital bands.
And now comes "Behind The Sun", proving invincible levels of stamina and prolificness considering the care and attention given to every element of these albums. And Motorpsycho definitely produce albums, just like those of the 1970s rock heyday their music both celebrates and continues, made to be consumed in one sitting with whatever side intoxicants you think may embellish the experience. "Behind The Sun" is a more expansive continuation of "Still Life...", complete with guitarist Reine Fiske once again, and finds Motorpsycho careering around well-worn canyons and turrets of their musical vision... reaching a punishing climax on it´s eleventh layer, "Victim Of Rock" in which the listened, or victim, is chained flailing to a rock monolith in the midst of a howling prog-metal hurricane and beaten senseless by the elemental forced Motorpsycho can still summon.
Motorpsycho have devoted 25 years to becoming an institution of psychedelic strangeness. Their determination to get further and further out there is undimmed on this, their 26th (!), album. The nine songs here clock in at over an hour and are built around a hazy psych-folk sound. Think Nordic Led Zeppelin on acid. The centrepiece is the 12-minute Hell, part 4-6: Traitor/The Tapestry/Swizz Cheese Mountain, an undulating episodic trip that mixes passages of pastoral ambience with waves of surging, interlocking guitar histrionics. Weird, wonderful and in a world of their own, the universe is definitely a better place with Motorpsycho in it.
Top marks go to the album´s 12-minute centrepiece, an unwieldy-named suite called Hell, part 4-6: Traitor/The Tapestry/Swizz Cheese Mountain. Here they seem to strike an ideal compromise between their love of all things ambient and their more brusque impulses. It starts off all watcher-of-the-skies delicate - you half expect a Roger Dean island to come floating by - before gearing up for the mighty rumble that inevitably follows.
Med en strålende karriere i ryggen er ikke stødige eller gode leveringer noe nytt fra denne rockebautaen. Etter et tosifret antall utgivelser er bandet forsatt på høyde med det beste de har gjort. En fremragende musikkforståelse preger musikerne. Og foruten ren musikalsk ferdighet, er det dristigheten ved å bane sin egen suksessfulle vei gjennom så og si alle sjangre som forsegler påstanden om at Motorpsycho er Norges beste rockband... Albumet byr på selve finessen av en erfaren sjangerstødighet og en enorm spennvidde som bandet har opparbeidet seg gjennom en årrekke... Tilhengere vil få gjenkjennelig materiale pluss noe nytt og atypisk. Kanskje vil en arena for nye fans også oppstå når bandet trapper opp sitt fantastiske univers. Av med hatten for Motorpsycho. 6/6.
Trønderne i Motorpsycho er i sitt 25 år bedre enn noensinne, og har laget et nytt dobbelt-album med den norsk/svenske gitaristen Reine Fiske som forlengelse av fjorårets "Still Life With Eggplant". Semi-progressiv tungrockprog som tidvis får begge armene i bevegelse, og med en stor detaljrikdom og frihetsflyt... husk å kjøpe den flott graverte vinylen også, da!