Second album psychedelia from California, this feeds on different drugs to the 60s psychonauts and has much more in common with modern heads like Tame Impala and the psych-inspired tunes of Thee Oh Sees. Album closer ‘The ‘Drift’ lets you into their vision, set amid a sea of swirly synths and fuzzy effects: “my mind is awake again/ so many miles away”. That place is presumably in another dimension, judged by the preceding 8 tracks of psychedelic rock in various hues, and most accessible to those in altered states of consciousness.
‘Melted Rope’ is a standout of spacey psych, a head song that gets progressively trippier, while ‘Reaper Invert’ has a ominous tone, full of droning synths and spacey fx, that would be the perfect accompaniment to a video of fractals repeating their endless patterns, at least until the song gets too heavy and grungy. Waking up the hippies is the melodic superfast ‘Self Hypnosis in 3 Days’ and the heavy-riffed space-rock of ‘The Unexplored Map’, owing something to the influence of old mentor Ty Segall. The crazed ‘Flesh Tour’, with its contrasting plain/effects-heavy sound, could be Thee Oh Sees and there’s something punk about the ferocity with which they play, not to mention the way that they combine styles, tempos and effects within the same song so that you’re shocked out of complacency when softly acoustic becomes fiercely electric, or punk fury becomes acid sweetness.
They’re called Wand and, while not quite magic, they have an invigorating sound that combines melodic heaviness with spacey psych-pop. Fire up the bong!