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06/20/2004: "electric heavyland."

I've never bothered keeping up with Acid Mothers Temple's pointlessly prolific recorded output--they're one of those bands where a little goes a long, long way. I used to have a habit, though, of collecting all their hologram-cover singles and randomly mailing them to friends of mine. But Acid Mothers Temple last night at Southpaw: completely, utterly awesome. They rocked me in ways I wasn't expecting to be rocked. Southpaw was packed, but not with the usual noise-crusties I'd expect to see; it was a pretty diverse group. Lots of people who looked like they just stopped by for a beer and were like "Hmm, so it appears that there is a cult Japanese psych band playing. Wanna stay?" So, Acid Mothers Temple. They're a bunch of goddamn hippies, of course, but they started out full-on metal, with lots of slow, sludgy Sabbath-style riffs repeated for ten, fifteen minutes. Fucking HEAVY. Yes, people were headbanging. One of the guitarists looked like Damo Suzuki but more badass. (Now look, Damo is totally badass, no question, but Damo radiates this benevolent, cheery "hey, anyone want a hug?" vibe that this guy most emphatically did not. I have hugged Damo. I don't think I would hug this guy.) The other guitarist was a dead ringer for G'n'R-era Slash, minus the tophat. The shaggy-hair-and-sweatpants bass player brought out Alf and Toucan Sam puppets at one point and started doing a little puppet show between songs. Soon, the band launched into these indescribably beautiful psych freakouts that really showed what cuddly melody-wusses those dudes are on the inside. Pretty, twinkly guitar lines repeated over and over, topped with BBC Radiophonic Workshop-style 'space' effects, with the bassist and the other guitarist jamming intensely, but kind of dreamily. The drummer seemed to be massaging the drum kit at one point. Not sure what the hell he was doing. Sometime he'd be bashing it all crazy, but then he'd get all soft and introspective. Aw. This isn't to say it didn't get pretty hard--by the end, Slash was swinging his guitar around by the neck with such fury that I was worried he was going to hurl it at us. He never did, of course. There were flowers to be communed with.

I will add that the Invent Acid Mothers Temple Album Titles thread on ILM has made my day. Personal favorites include "The Solar Gosling & The Infinity Doom Orchestra Pt. 1: Gasoline-Hashish Starride," "Tanz der Lemongrass," "Pokemon Duul II," "Progressive Robot Armadillos of the Moon," "Quiet Wyatt," "Stoned Pilots Temple and the Melting Macarthur Park (In the Dark)," "Cotton Casino and the Edwin Pouncey Hand Cream"...the list goes on.

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auto loan online said @ 11/02/2004 12:57 AM EST

Geeta -- have hosted two live Acid Mothers sessions on radio, check em out if you can; they're both pretty amazing sounding. One had a crazy version of "In C":

they're archived in Real Audio and MP3, just scroll down and look for the AMT mentions (2000 and 2002 playlists I believe).

Brian Turner said @ 06/30/2004 12:52 AM EST

AMT are vastly superior live to on record- even records of their live gigs never really manage to capture the magic. The recent "Live In Japan" CD was OK but not amazing; the AMT Soul Collective Tour CDR had a nice version of Pink Lady Lemonade but it wasn't essential, and their "Live In Occident" CD from a few years back was pretty rubbish.

I toured with them once a few years back. The Damo Suzuki guy is Higashi Hiroshi, who's really nice guy- we gave them a WWF figure as an end of tour present, and he loved it. The other guitarist, Kawabata Makoto is a bit more intense to talk to. Superb guitarist though, he played through our band's two little guitar amps for maximum-rock-volume (as he might have said, can't remember).

I think their live version of La Novia contains one of THE great riffs in it. Shame their records never seem to build on this heavy-direction; I can't really be bothered with their records these day, the good tunes are disapated over an enormous discography. Plus, the production on most of their records always has an eccentric spaciness with squelchy squidgy synths and bass concealing the crunchy guitar action. "Troubadours From Another Heavenly World" from a few years back is one I still listen to, though- that is quite superb.

Derek Walmsley said @ 06/24/2004 10:21 AM EST

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