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Album review: The Black Angels - Phosphene Dream (Blue Horizon)

Ridden with stinking cliches, The Black Angels' fourth is a hackneyed psych trip

If it’s tomb-heavy stoner psych rock you want, pickings are rich. Black Mountain, Dead Meadow, Wooden Shjips, Sleepy Sun... a strong field leaves little space for Black Angels. Their fourth album has none of the witchy class that makes these others so compelling and comes off like a painfully hokey play-act. Listening to the title track is like watching a made-up band play a film club scene as oil-lamp projections swirl around, a hot blonde girl has a bad trip and our hero realises that the hippy dream is, like, a LIE, man. And if you have a song called ‘River Of Blood’, it should be soul-blanchingly terrifying, not a flimsy 13th Floor Elevators pastiche. A phosphene is a vision of light; it’s also a gas that smells of rotting fish.

Duncan Gillespie

Click here to get your copy of The Black Angels' 'Phosphene Dream' from Rough Trade Shops.
4 / 10

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