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Shifting Sands - Cosmic Radio Station

  by Carl Bookstein

published: 5 / 2 / 2016

Shifting Sands - Cosmic Radio Station
Label: Occultation Recordings
Format: CD


Compelling, well-rendered psychedelic rock on second album from New Zealand band, the Shifting Sands

'Cosmic Radio Station' was first conceived in a broken down shack and converted wool shed in the hills above Port Chalmers, New Zealand near Dunedin. A venue named Chick’s Hotel in Port Chalmers, run by the three members of the Shifting Sands, is the epicentre of the vibrant Dunedin pop underground. A crunching electric guitar line and a steady drum beat kick off 'Waiting for the Sun' - entrancing psych rock from the get go. A spellbinding vocal comes in: "Waiting for the sun to fall… fall at your feet.” The New Zealand psych rock scene seems to be absolutely happening, including two songs of guitar assistance here (later in the album), from the great David Kilgour, who also heralds from New Zealand and who, with his band the Heavy Eights, the Shifting Sands have toured with. The lyric goes on soothingly: “Waiting for the sun to call out your name.” On 'All the Stars', mellifluously flowing instrumentals combine with a compelling lead vocal. This album casts an instantly hypnotic spell. “All the stars are in the sky shining on you/Making it brighter.” A well played violin adds accompaniment. 'Making It Through' features a psychedelic guitar groove - the electric music washes over the listener powerfully- a mesmerising sea of sound. On 'Cosmic Radio Station', this band enters a first rate performance from start to finish. On the song 'Dreaming to Keep Awake', the dreamlike effect here is positively mystical - a psychedelic soundscape. The album continues chugging along brightly with pulsating momentum, more stinging electric guitar and hypnotic drum beats. The closer 'Radio Silence' utilises soft glistening chords, capturing easy vibrations - a quiet final song from an evocative, well-rendered album. New Zealand psych rock is very much alive and healthy with the Shifting Sands.

Track Listing:-
1 Waiting for the Sun
2 All the Stars
3 We All Fall Down
4 Making It Through
5 Whareakeake
6 Should Be Better
7 Dreaming to Keep Awake
8 Coming Back
9 Abstract Objects
10 Radio Silence

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