When you're in - IN SEARCH OF SPACE #28 +BONUS Keith Vaz rant

NOTE- On an unrelated parliamentary matter – Fuck off Keith Vaz, fuck you and fuck your stupid uninformed ideas. I despise you and your entire global clique of people who fervently believe any form of media can do anything except enhance the lives of its audience by letting them experience fear and horror and violence in a risk-free setting rather than make these human tropes taboo because you ignorantly and cynically expect everyone under 35 to be a potential serial-rapist and Unabomber. Video games are an unprecedented medium for exploring the human condition and your ilk of jack-booted bank managers have historically opposed every new medium and been beaten. Just as with books, films, television and graphic novels, on the subject of unrestricted video games we will triumph over your forces of old and evil. Please know that this is but a tiny and relatively nice message from your leagues of despisers broadcasting you hate from every corner of the world every second of every day. We are daily renewed in our joy that your tremulous voice continues to go completely ignored by those who possess actual power; whatever their other failings, they stay away from your backward poisonous ideas in their droves. Please just stop; you miserable hate-filled old fuck.


“To such deep delight ‘twould win me
That with music loud and long,
I would build that dome within the air!
That sunny dome, those caves of ice,
And all who heard should see them there,
And all should cry: “Beware! Beware!”
The Kubla Kahn poem – Samuel Taylor Coleridge

The 12th of July just gone would have been the 116th birthday of Richard Buckminster Fuller (had he been immortal), for those who don’t know their chemistry, the man who discovered the ‘Buckminsterfullerene’, a carbon molecule with the formula C60, or in layman’s terms, 60 carbon atoms joined together. You know in science fiction where there’s a moon base, and it has pentagonal windows forming a glass dome? Buckminsterfullerines look just like that, except they’re tiny, y’see. The geodesic dome was essential to the optimistic future vision presented to the psychedelic movement in the sixties. It’s also an instrumental part of what makes Carlton Melton’s instrumental space-rock dreamsludge. Mister Fuller also contributed one of the most relevant and unknowingly accurate quotes about Carlton Melton, “If you are the master, be sometimes blind; if you are the servant, be sometimes deaf”, clearly Fuller had been somehow listening to the band the way they’re supposed to be heard, ears bleeding begging for more. Structure is important, even before the music is made, and is ironic because the music in preconceived ways, has no structure. The band record live in a specially constructed geodesic dome in a method they refer to as “hit it and quit it”. Their website states “there are no studios. We record in Brian's house and Brian happens to live in a geodesic dome”. Even if I hadn’t heard the massive empty space-rock genius of Carlton Melton, their website would convince me that they are hombres are not to be taken lightly.

Fucking funky shit, the lost genesis recording

“If you had the opportunity to jam in a geodesic dome, wouldn’t you form a band just for the occasion?”

I have been trying, ever since I got my first hit of Carlton Melton, to get a hold of their debut recording, the live in Point Arena album. I can’t find the CD for sale anywhere and no mp3s are to be found. It is always fascinating, but I’ll update this blog if I ever do find it.

When you’re in, Carlton Melton comes to fruition

I cut myself shaving in the mirror several weeks ago. Really deep. It bled into the sink and mixed with the water. When You’re In, Carlton Melton’s absolutely resonant Pink Floyd homage was playing through my flat while all this took place. It was at that moment that I saw how incredible this album really is. This isn’t just a dreamsludge monument rocking like silent film without language all around the world, it’s more than that. It’s an identity, it’s a bit of a state of mind. I began to play nothing but this album, became an addict. I’d get up early just to hear it in the morning, I’d take it for walks around where I live, I’d stay up late at night to listen to its organic rhythmics come to their clattering conclusion. It seems almost trite to use the platitude ‘every listen bears fresh fruit’ in the face of such unprecedented and quiet genius, but I found myself awestruck at every new moment I uncovered with repeated listens.
Carlton Melton’s previous incarnation was Zen Guerrilla, a band destined for stardom astride a Moonage Daydream cover played at the Hole in the Wall club in L.A. but fate saw to ruining that chance. Dawn came in the morning after the night before and before anyone could get buzzing about this awesome band covering Bowie, a wayward truck piloted by destiny put a great big hole in the wall of the Hole in the Wall. Zen Guerrilla didn’t become superstars, and Carlton Melton don’t look set to either, but that doesn’t mean they aren’t visionaries. Their debut record, Pass It On, runs through a spectrum of psychedelic soundscapes for the discerning psychonaut all in the space of an hour and ten. Beginning with the deliriously excellent cover of Pink Floyd’s When You’re In that, for people familiar with the Floyd version will recognise is being helplessly stretched as if it has been on a medieval rack, heavied up and seems to be playing with puppet strings to make your head nod. I was hooked on their debut by the seven minute end of this opener. Clearly, these hombres were to be taken seriously. But there was another surprise held in store throughout this album. Like a farmer methodically planting seeds in every corner of the drone/post-rock/space-rock meadow, Carlton Melton never waste time scattering seed over the same land twice. The throbbing heaviness of When You’re In, excellent though it is, never makes a return. The only constant is the analogue hiss over the back of all the tracks, recorded in one fell swoop. Sonically, it’s wide open. Like the sun in Shetland in high summer, this bitch of a record just keeps spinning and spinning and looks like it’s never going to end. Sometimes it dips towards the horizon, but never for long. The drums, the languid guitar work stretches every idea out till it seems to last all afternoon. Tracks drop in and out. Days drop in and out. You put the record on Sunday night after a hard day and come up smiling Tuesday morning. Smooth ambient space-rock jams give way to thudding Pink Floyd cover riffs and bleed easily back into rippling sonic stretching into infinity.

Climb up to the zenith. See where you are. Naw man, I can see where I am right from here, and I don’t even have to move.

I won’t spoil their latest release because it’s something you’ll be thankful I let you discover on your own. A whole new basket of rings: Country Ways.

Written under duress by Steven.

Like that? Why not check out what we've said about Het Droste Effect and Om for some similar trips.

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