Spacehead - "Roadburn 2006"
From Aural Innovations #35 (January 2007)
One thing I've learned from doing Aural Innovations is that there are many interpretations and conceptions of what Space Rock is. The journey and discovery has been pure joy. So much great and varied kinds of music. But precious little of it seems to be good old rock n rolling Hawkwind inspired Space Rock anymore. Spacehead have long carried that torch and continue to shine it brightly. And while Roadburn 2006 continues the pattern of live releases and compilations, rather than a proper new Spacehead album, it's a welcome CD nonetheless, and shows the band in top concert form, performing at the 11th annual Roadburn festival in the Netherlands.
This is, as any Spacehead fan might expect, classic ass kicking Space Rock 'n roll. "Cosmic Man" opens the set and is a heavy driving rocker singing about time travel. Excellent song with some killer guitar bits. "Fly On the Wall" and "Axis of Evil" are more great songs, the former rocking in space with a tasty metallic edge. "Copters" is one of the few songs of the set I don't know. Not sure if it was released before or not. But it's easy paced yet very heavy and darkly atmospheric. The alien synths are all over the place, and along with the eerie keyboards and pounding rhythm section makes for a powerfully intense slab of molten hot Space Rock. Outstanding! "Continuum" is an equally haunting song that rocks hard in metallic space while retaining an atmospheric quality. But when the band takes off, this sucker ROCKS! Great jam sections. An outstanding song with lyrics about traveling through the galaxy to destinations unknown. "Eclipse" is a floating cosmic instrumental that serves as the perfect lead in to the power rocking "Standing On The Edge", one of the truly great Spacehead "songs". If they ever released a single… this would be it. The band close the set with a monster version of "Dark Star", one of their earlier songs. Top it off with a rousing cover of Hawkwind's "Blue Skin" and you've got a steam rolling set of heavy duty SPACE ROCK. Temporary drummer Steve Young, recruited only 6 weeks before the show, really stepped up to the plate and fits in with the band quite comfortably. Buy it directly from band and check out sample songs at their Myspace page.
For more information you can visit the Spacehead web site at: http://www.myspace.com/spaceheaduk.
Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz