Astral Quest - Electrick Shaman LP (2007)
Rare are the bands influenced by the seventies, and more specifically by both the Beatles and the Blues Boom, that transcend their adoration for this period and provide something reaching the level of credibility if released in the 70's. In France, it's more than rare, there was actually no example. Astral Quest are the first. This band, whose leader is an inspired guitarist named JM Devaux (a real dandy in the 70's acception), has reached on this LP (their second) a new gold standard for neo-70's music. The influences are large (Devaux has a fragile voice not far from Ray Davies and melodies are inherited from McCartney & Harrison) and never this sounds as plagiarism of a unique reference as it's often the case in bands imitating their ancient idols. The main reason is that they often sound quite Stoner (in the Kyuss vein), a style that is very posterior to the period we talk about. And there's also some reminiscences of Syd Barrett, the Soft Boys or Television Personalities, you imagine my pleasure. I encourage you to dl and listen to this album, you won't be deceived I think. In particular, listen to the B-side, a 17 min suite called "The Atomic Shack Suite" (based on a traumatic and dramatic personal experience of JM Devaux), and a real gem, with "As The Children Play" a truly wonderful song. In brief, if you want to hear the Beatles fronted by Ray Davies playing Stoner, this is the LP for you. Enjoy it here. And don't forget to buy the LP if you like it. You can get it there.
Below, 2 songs showing 2 sides of the band, the soft electrick Stoner blues one with "Someday (We'll Go Back Home)" and its superb final , and the delicate ballad one with "As The Children Play", a peaceful song that provides some peace in the tortured minds of doomsters like I am.