Monday, March 16, 2009

Peter Koppes - "Misty Heights And Cloudy Memories" 2xCD

Australian psychedelic group The Church have been around for a great long time, creating some memorable and suitably trippy space-out rock sounds, yet seldom lacking in melodic hooks and darker, more introspective overtones. This fairly concise solo retrospective from guitarist Koppes shows off his own chops, sans the band, and damned if this apple doesn't fall far from the tree.
Disc A covers his more recent output, and these are clear evidence that Koppes' spectral guitar sound is integral the Church's oeuvre, indeed. Certainly, the mystical poetics of (Church frontman/lyricist) Steve Kilbey are missing here, but Koppes does an admirable job at keeping it consistent and stylish, even ambiguous at times. Atmospherically, the subtly mysterious tones and almost-ambient flow are more than palatable. 'Met Her Today' is a catchy pop tune of the highest order, whereas 'Thank You' could be a Church outtake circa 'Starfish'. Disc B showcases Koppes' earlier solo work, and although some of this sounds awfully dated with primitive drum boxes and simplistic keyboard accents, there are some fine little songs here as well. 'Desert Flower Bride' is a top-shelf standout, with the resounding chorus of 'I don't know what love's about' - this one will stick in your head, to be sure. For Church fans, this one's a must-hear. Otherwise? If mature, artfully-done psychedelic pop is your destination, here's your ticket. (Immersion)

Peter Koppes Church page

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