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Eternal Elysium : Searching Low & High

"Searching low & high" was what The Seeker was doing back in the 60s in The Who's song of psychedelic questing. He was not afraid to ask anyone from Tim Leary to The Beatles just "what was going on", even if no answer would be forthcoming until the day he died. A constant quest is a good way to summarize the 10+-year career of Japan's Eternal Elysium; they're unafraid to invoke any musical (or chemical, one presumes) inspiration on their grand quest for the Lost Chord.

'Searching Low & High' has founder, vocalist and guitarist Yukito Okazaki in finer form than we've heard for years, better IMO than 2001's 'Share' and in the same league as that classic slab of psychedelic mindfunk, 'Spiritualized D.'. Heaviness and variety are the watchwords here, all with the recognisable EE. crunching blues/psych/prog/doom sound oozing from every note. This go 'round American Tana Hugo is on bass and vocals, and a fine and unexpectedly simpatico addition she is. Antonio Ishikawa is more than a match for the musical tripping as the lazer hits the pits. 'Not So Far' is spacey doom with epic vocals and a tasty fast guitar break; 'Twilight High' is psychedelic doom like you like it; the poetically titled 'Approaching Stranger on the Electric Trail of Dreams' has majestic spaciness galore, and 'No Isolation' is a Monster Magnet-style punisher. Believe me its all good, although the psilocybin pop of 'Before the Morning Comes' sounds just a big too accessible to these ears. It all turns into a dayglow meltdown on the glorious 16+ minute 'Green Song', an anthem to all Eternal Elysium stands for, with a feast of heavy riffage morphing into thunderous doom chords and atmospheric freakouts. Don't take the brown acid!

This album was produced at Donner & Blitzen studio, utilized by such talents as Fatso Jetson, Brant Bjork, and earthlings?. Perhaps that explains the ventures into the poppier side of things. In any event, Eternal Elysium has produced a wonderful chunk of craftsmanship, loaded with groove and the highest level of musical ability. It's Tommy Bolin with a pentagram tattoo, Grand Funk on intelligence enhancers, it's Cream, Acid King, Atomic Bitchwax, Soundgarden, and MM. mixed in a witch's cauldron and served up heavy on the brain-melting alkaloids. The quest is over - for now - and the heavy joy is yours for the taking. These sound paintings will expand your mind!

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Reefer Happiness
2. Not So Far
3. Hazy Sublime
4. Twilight High
5. Approaching Stranger on the Electric Trail of Dreams
6. No Isolation
7. Before the Morning Comes
8. Green Song

Duration : Approx. 53 minutes

Visit the Eternal Elysium bandpage.

Reviewed on ??-??-???? by Kevin McHugh
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