Ozric Tentacles have had more than their share of lineup changes over the years, but one thing that hasn't changed about the British instrumentalists is the fact that they remain difficult to pigeonhole. Some consider them progressive rock, some consider call them psychedelic rock, some consider them space rock, some consider them a jam band, and some have even described their 2000s recordings as "electronica with fewer electronics." Recorded between 2006 and 2008, The Yum Yum Tree is probably best categorized as "psychedelic progressive rock and space rock with a major electronica influence." The Yum Yum Tree isn't electronica in the strict sense; the programming that leader Ed Wynne (the only one remaining from the Ozrics' original 1983 lineup) provides is heard alongside real guitar, real bass, and real drums played in real time. The Yum Yum Tree is more played than programmed, although a variety of electronica influences (ranging from trance to ambient) assert themselves -- and there are other influences as well, including jazz and Middle Eastern music. Clearly, having a sense of adventure remains important to the Ozrics, whose 2006-2008 lineup consists of Ed Wynne on guitar and programming, Brandi Wynne on keyboards, Vinny Shillito on bass, and Roy Brosh on drums. There has been a lot of debate among Ozrics fans over the merits of their increased use of electronics; some longtime followers believe that Ed Wynne has become too reliant on programming. But as strong as the electronica influence is on this 53-minute CD, the Ozrics still have plenty of rock muscle and sound like a band rather than a studio-only project. The Yum Yum Tree isn't among their essential releases, but it is an interesting, enjoyable listen and demonstrates that Ed Wynne is still open to taking chances after all these years.
AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson