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Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Scan Hopper - Scan Hopper 2 review

Year : 2011
Genre : Soft Rock with a Chillout and Psychedelic tendency
Label : Independent
Origin : United States
Official site : > - here - <

There is something wildly authentic, impertinently original and nihilistically rebellious about if and when you name your second self titled album with a numeric indication of its sequential nature, and this exactly is what Austin based ensemble Scan Hopper did with their 2011 second full length Scan Hopper 2. The music, as noted on the group's BandCamp site, is optimized rather for optimum enjoyment, as opposed of being optimized for maximum loudness paua'. The claim is well supported by the perpetuated rendition of the soulfully realized space/psychedelic/soft/chillout rock you will find on this declaration. The content occupies a narrative musical space between Pink Floyd and the rock traditions of late '60s and early '70s, though veterans claim that if you remember the '60s, you weren't even there. Read on to know more about the disc.

The bulk of the album is peaceful, always elegant, and relatively restrained, sporting a good amount of time via inspecting the referenced Pink Floyd influences, yet all this does not stop the fabric from turning more intense throughout its middle section, a field on which the psychedelic space-rock opera feel reigns rampant/prominent while maintaining the right to pull your mind through a warp drive for the mere fun of it. The disc is an immediate recommendation for the devoted fan of said genre, and an easy one for all other music lovers, prime reason being that rare are the times when this type of music is realized with a deliberately and intriguingly fragile stature - the term is a compliment right now - to it.

Granted, with some particular guitar riffs and gritty tempos, the band even offers tentative nods to the more zoned-out variant of Nirvana, and, to be perfectly frank, Nirvana never ever revolved around the mere timeless heft of the distorted guitar. I wish to reiterate my claim though that the music mostly is quasi-meditative and forgivingly morose in a Pink Floydian way, even courting the vistas of atmospheric ambient with certain declarations, like "Grey Paint on Brick", nice complimentary violin section included. And what about the very next track, "Jules 2"? I swear the song starts out with the very same chord Charles Manson uses to open his song "Sad Sad Game" with. Listen to the original, then to the Guns 'N Roses cover of "Sad Sad Game", then to this particular Scan Hopper song, and inform me if you think I'm mistaken. Given that the track is 1 minute long, Scan Hopper might be out there to mindhack the "I see what you did there!!" out of you, and they might have done that with me already. The voices agree.

On Scan Hopper 2, the Pink Floydesque singing is especially well realized throughout, as it oftentimes is supported by luscious bright female chorus presence all in the spirit of a highly blissful Abba overdose. Smartly constrained and spiceful. The production values are especially top tier and exemplary on the declaration, particularly when considering that the album is the direct result of a DYI endeavor. The LP is a living/breathing and quite significant testament of the fact that competent music production really is not a matter of molesting the volume knob, it rather is a matter of accounting your sense of the sonic space OR the very lack of it.

Check out Scan Hopper's badassly - no irony in my world - titled second album, Scan Hopper 2 at their BandCamp site below.

ScanHopper at BandCamp

GyZ at Bandcamp.

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