Mazinga Phaser dissatisfied customers of hallucination (IDOL)
Reviewed by David Lynch, Fri., June 30, 2000
dissatisfied customers of hallucination (IDOL)With a title like dissatisfied customers of hallucination, odds are the music within is something approaching psychedelic. No false advertising here; the latest from Metroplex collective Mazinga Phaser is an hourlong cosmic ride. The quintet's fourth album opens with the spurned-love techno-lament "Time Is Its Own Revenge," with the leadoff lyrics, "sweating blood, and I'm feeling stoned, I think I'm happier when I'm alone," buttressed by an evolving Eno-esque sonicscape. The remaining nine songs take the listener through a melting time warp of experimental rock, replete with futuristic tones and spacey influences that would please both contemporary mind travelers and the mid-Eighties mousse-and-trenchcoat coterie. Jessica Nelson's vocals don't detract from the whole, but they come across flat at times, not being given the same studio TLC as the guitars or other sounds. "Scattered Smothered and Covered," for example, might sound better as an instrumental. No question, though, this band can play; witness the well-spoken snare work in "Blue Sparkle Barchetta." Overall, the group succeeds best when it charts an experimental course, like in the backward acoustic marimba instrumental "Apocalypso," or "Counting Breaths," which could almost pass as a soundtrack by trumpeter/composer Mark Isham. Set phasers to space -- the soundtrack for a wake'n'bake, Sunday.