Norwegian psychedelicists Motorpsycho execute their psych-rock workouts with Scandinavian polish and rigour on Here Be Monsters, a concept album (of course!) about psychological distress. The methodical guitar progressions of “Lacuna/Sunrise” and “Running with Scissors” are pitched between Mogwai and Pink Floyd, building elegantly and unthreateningly – which is fine, except the lyrics deal with darker matters. In “Lacuna/Sunrise”, the protagonist’s personality dissolves until only shame remains; “Big Black Dog”, meanwhile, wrestles with depression for 18 minutes without conveying emotional turmoil. Here and in “IMS” (an acronym for “Inner Mounting Shame”), the lyrics sound like they’re being negotiated, rather than expressed, while the music, for all its pleasing West Coast and Brit-psych affinities, lacks the risk and edge that made Sixties psychedelia such a thrill-ride.
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