The strange world of psych-rock is not one I have spent too much time in, and it has been a failing I’ve strived to improve upon this year. But I also recently finished reading Julian Cope’s excellent Japrocksampler book, and when I saw AcidSitter were a Polish/Japanese group that seemed to be right in that wheelhouse, I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to jump in feet first. Make Acid Great Again (what a title by the way) is out now through Interstellar Smoke Records.
The hovering, wailing opening note of the eponymous track hums into a rumbling bass groove and a bluesy swagger, infectious vocal hooks and a guitar tone that really reminds me of Them Crooked Vultures. Trippy passages weave soulful guitar over wandering basslines, and vocalist Rafal Klimzak has an excellent, slightly raspy croon. It adds an edge to the synthy vibes of It’s Fine, or the uneasy grooves of Sweat Dreams; it isn’t quite a punkish feel, but it definitely goes harder than a lot of this kind of dreamier psych stuff I’ve come across before.
There is still more than enough of that trippy, swirling psychedelia drifting throughout the album though, maintaining a chilled-out atmosphere that is thick and enveloping when it is deployed in The Healing Journey, which has more than a touch of Boris about it, especially during that shimmering solo.
Make Acid Great Again is an invigorating trip…
Last Few Days is my favourite track here though; a driving bass line, a squalling solo, a charismatic and chameleonic vocal performance. It’s all leading to the psych freakout of closer Staywatch, a jam that starts off fairly inoffensive and ambient, a whistling stoner wind, but builds into a swaggering, Zeppelin-esque banger that hits all the right notes for the psyche fan and the stoner rock fan at the same time.
Make Acid Great Again is an invigorating trip, loaded with plenty of the type of dreamy, spacey vibes you’d expect from something called this, but never leaving the solid rock core smothered in effects. I’m not sure if ‘down to earth’ is the turn of phrase I’m looking for, but it feels very apt for AcidSitter‘s new record. Just a new Earth, where everything is a little fuzzy.
Scribed by: Sandy Williamson