Book of Shadows - "IndigoM"
(self-released 2004, CDR)
From Aural Innovations #31 (June 2005)
From Austin, Texas, Book Of Shadows is the band longtime ST 37 keyboardist Carlton Crutcher formed with his wife Sharon after he left that legendary space rock outfit in 2001 to pursue an interest in music of a less than rock 'n roll nature. The first Book of Shadows CD, Hanged Man, featured an enjoyable set of trippy melodic songs (see AI #26). But Carlton had warned that the music on Hanged Man was not really indicative of the Book Of Shadows sound, explaining that the band focuses more on improv/avant/experimental music. And IndigoM, recorded live on KVRX radio, certainly makes clear what he meant. For this performance Book of Shadows is the trio of Carlton on keyboards, Sharon on vocals and Douglas Ferguson on guitar and electronics (not to be confused with deceased keyboard master Doug Ferguson).
IndigoM consists of a single 52 minute guitar and electronics exploration. The music is deep in space, but also harsh and sonically devastating. Floating alien soundscapes evolve with an edgy aggression. Sharon's vocals serve an instrumental function, contributing to the construction of the otherworldly landscape that Book of Shadows formulates, though there are moments of narration. This is real bowels of the spacecraft avant-garde sound creation and the trio do an impressive job of gradually navigating the journey on an aurally picturesque course. Fans of Hal McGee and Chris "Mental Anguish" Phinney's more purely spaced out works will find much to enjoy on IndigoM, as will anyone into lengthy experimental electronic sound art. Put on the headphones and strap your self in.
For more information you can email Book Of Shadows at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz