01. Venus Fly Trap
02. Public Address System / Pompeii
03. Passing Trains
04. Saturday Disaster (Parts I – IV)
Jupiter Six : bass, vocals
Dr. Roberts : percussion
DT : synthesizer
Recorded live at First Studio in November 1995.
Discovering Pipedream was one of those rare occasions when my instincts were spot on… I saw this strange disc in a local Columbus shop, with hardly a word written on the cover, just the band’s name and the title. Even the liner notes were minimal and gave me the idea they might be a techno/dance outfit. But I just had a feeling…and after seeing it several times over a period of a few weeks, I went for it. Maybe it was the mention of Hamburg in the title, where Cluster recorded one of my favorite electronic works ‘Sowiesoso.’ Or maybe it was just the mystery of it all…. what exactly *was* this album all about?!
As I soon learned, Pipedream is a very adventurous trio of space rockers (I guess you could say) from Vancouver in British Columbia, current home to Hawkwind’s old knob-twiddler and axe handler Del Dettmar. Perfect! This album, entitled ‘The Journey from Hamburg to Iceland Begins’ (1996, Futura001CD), itself is full of wonderful spacey sounds and effects, but there’s much more to it than that. Percussionist Dr. Roberts is a chief member of the group, his hypnotic beats (coupled with Jupiter Six’s ‘tremolo bass’) laying the solid foundation upon which the layers of electronics fly (duties shared between Jupiter Six and D.T.). The results are outstanding…the four lengthy explorations that the three undertake last almost an hour and every moment sounds fresh and exciting. What an unknown gem this is!
« Venus Fly-Trap » and « Public Address System » (the first part of Track Two) are similar in some respects, both long, pulsating jams bolstered by Dr. Roberts tom-heavy, but not quite Dingerlike, drumming style. The transition from « PAS » into « Pompeii » is a climactic point in the album, the trio turning things up a bit to present a wondrous and majestic statement as if we’ve just emerged from behind a planetary shadow to gaze upon a star’s birth. Next, the six-minute « Passing Trains » is Green-era Hillage re-done (sans guitar), but I honestly think this tune is superior to anything on that album… and these keyboard sounds are among the best I’ve heard in the 90s. The finale, « Saturday Disaster » is presented in four parts lasting over twenty minutes, and is actually the most adventurous work. Part One is very minor and unsettling (not unlike my beloved Circle from Finland) with (from what I can gather) D.T. switching over to slide guitar and using lots of echo effects. Part Two is more of a freak-out, the rhythm track appearing more subtle beneath the outbursts of crazed feedback guitar. The quiet, spacey stillness of Part Three lulls us into thinking the album is set to drift off into nothingness when to top it all off, the three treat us to a more spirited reprise of the beginning.
Everything presented here was recorded live in the studio, and it’s difficult for me to see how just three musicnauts could flawlessly produce so much music of such a poignant nature. Over the past six months or so, ‘Journey’ has probably seen more rotations in the ole’ CD player than anything else. (Keith Henderson, Aural Inovations)
FR Voilà une pochette qui ne trompe pas sur la marchandise, on navigue effectivement dans du pur rock planant. Et c’est extrêmement chaudement recommandé.
(Si vous avez le LP de Pipedream sur Amberley, n’hésitez surtout pas à le partager…)
ENG Lost in time, pure epic and pulsating space rock from Canada. Actually, this one is extremely highly recommended.
(And if you have Pipedream’s LP on Amberley, please post/share it with us.)