Nik Turner

Space Gypsy

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Now in his mid-seventies, Nik Turner has spent a lifetime exploring the fringes of spaced-out, psychedelic rock as a member of Hawkwind (in two different periods), with Sphynx, and eventually as a solo artist and bandleader. Space Gypsy features Turner's vocals, and his trademark saxophones and flutes front a quintet whose sound is drenched in synths, mellotrons, electric guitars, and drums. His vocals are awash in reverb but they ride cleanly just above the instrumental fray. While this music isn't so much prog as cosmic rock, it has enough weirdness in both its production and with the man himself singing of Mayans, space aliens, multidimensional realities, and mystic and occult practices to please most acid travelers. Clocking in at 50 minutes, standout tracks include opener "Fallen Angel STS-51-L," with its crunchy guitar driving through the layered mellotrons and drums, the gently spacy "Galaxy Rise," that contains some lovely flute playing, the space-punk throb of "We Ride the Timewinds," and the forbidding, paranoid closer, "Something's Not Right." There isn't anything new here, but that's not the point. This fulfills the prescription that Turner and Hawkwind fans ordered from their favorite interstellar doctor.

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