Typically wild new action from The Cosmic Dead, the Glaswegian psych-heavyweights. Rainbowhead features the group raging their way through jams that are weighty, frantic, riff-tastic and experimental all at the same time. This LP is pressed to ‘coke bottle clear’ vinyl (ooh!) on Blackest Rainbow, in a limited edition of 900 copies.
8/10 Robin Staff review, 23 March 2016
Here is a psych rock record and here, in rough order, is the course it takes: the same riff over and over again feat the occasional bit of low end; squeaky extra riffing; kosmische synth whirr; contentedly average grade bassline, propulsive but repetitive drumbeat. Sometimes the whole thing breaks down and you feel really happy about your achievements as a listener, like you’ve finished running a marathon under a rainbow every colour from every possible world. ‘Grats, you, for sweating out a victory melody.
I am here summing up the first side of the Cosmic Dead’s transcendent but typical ‘Rainbowhead’, which begins with the most bona fide psych jam of all time before creasing into the melodic yet ambient sheen of “Skye Burial”. It’s a rather wonderful little bit of symbiosis, proving the Cosmic Dead to be best at flow: “Human Sausage” might not be the most interesting opener for a record, but it floats gorgeously into its successor, which hands the reigns over to the gnarled grunge-psych of “Inner C” with similar subliminal cool.
“Rainbowhead” opens on a woozy bit of guitar malfunction before quickly addressing its status as psych rock with a navigating bassline and a stringently filled drumbeat, as if securing the song with seatbelts (really trippy ones tho, right?). That opening riff continues to gesticulate through the song, juxtaposing what’s rigid about the band’s set-up with their own rebellion -- more guitar parts begin to oscillate around, at times becoming the song’s structure after a long while fucking it up. That’s why it’s so compelling: because the Cosmic Dead can take bits of song and slowly mould them into a shape you no longer recognise.
As a standalone track, “Rainbowhead” might be the year’s best slice of psychedelia yet. Hop on.
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