Album Review: Jet Black Hallucinations by Blown Out

Fuck me this is good.

I could end the review there because this tells you everything you need to know about this first release on Golden Mantra Records, a Newcastle label founded by Adam from Pigs, Pigs, Pigs, Pigs, Pigs, Pigs, Pigs (hereafter ‘Pigs x7’, my favourite band name). What a way to kick off. Apparently this isn’t the first Blown Out release, but it’s the first one I’ve come across and it’s certainly convinced me to search out the band’s other stuff because if its even 10% as good as this then I’m going to love it.

Blown Out are a 3 piece comprising Mike Vest from Bong on guitar and Matt Baty and Johnny Hedley from Pigs x7 on drums and bass. Together they have produced the sort of mind-bending, brain-frying, beautiful, tight guitar-led psych freak-outs that is going to be fighting for room on your sound system with the likes of Earthless and Black Bombaim. Seriously, if you think those bands are good have a listen to Blown Out – because that’s exactly what you will be: totally fucking blown out!

The title track, which is over sixteen minutes long, seems to go on forever and yet is over in a flash. The guitar work is astounding and has you tripping off in all sorts of directions, its heavy but somehow has a lightness to it too. It’s very hard to describe because you just lose yourself in it. Brilliant though this it merely serves as an introduction to the next track, ‘Transgalactic World Eater’, which does exactly what it says. This is a monster of a number, a huge and heavy black hole consuming everything before it and leaving behind it only the memory of its greatness. I’m running out of superlatives. My only complaint is that it is over after twelve minutes…

The third track, ‘Ultrawave Communications’ is more considered than the previous two. Hard and monolithic it moves at a more glacial pace but still feels absolutely massive and reminded me of some of the more freeform tracks from You’re Smiling Now But We’ll All Turn Into Demons.

This album is totally relentless and after listening to it you I felt both shattered and euphoric. it has that knack of seemingly passing over you while at the same time burrowing its way deep into your brain, opening its steel tentacles and secreting its beautiful venom into your cerebral cortex; from then on resistance is largely futile.



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