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HILLS - Alive At Roadburn

Yes, here it is! Sweden's Hills have released my officially eleventh favorite festival show of 2016 (how ridiculously specific) on record. Well, I came too late to the vinyl party - or at least I thought, as there seem to be copies there again now -, but "Alive At Roadburn" is also available on CD or as Bandcamp download.

HILLS - Alive At Roadburn (CD) (2017)

It always feels a little redundant to describe a live recording when you've already done a review of the show itself. So unsurprisingly the four tracks (each one roughly running fourteen minutes) offer just the same great eclectically shimmering  psych trips I remember from the Green Room.

The strongest trait of Hills is the light-footed, fizzing interplay between the guitars, which flows and bubbles all around your senses and is always kept in line by the confident ever-hypnotically-grooving rhythm section. Pure space rock with soft hints of laid-back blues and country as well as eastern and almost jazzy vibes.

Hills live at Roadburn 2016
The weakest thread on the other hand clearly are the vocals, but that doesn't really matter, because Hills just don't play the music which demands a grammy-worthy performance on the microphone.The additional guy in "National Drone" still annoys me a little, but he fits in slightly better than I felt in Tilburg, I even realized that some of his lines (Or all? Need to investegate this further) are in German. There seems to be a multi-langual mix going on in in all lyrics.

Pity that the concert hasn't been even longer. The band had originally intended to play six songs, but they obviously got carried away in their jams, so there was only enough time for these four. For the listening experience at home it might just by the right length though.

Overall this is a great recording of a fantastic Roadburn show. Highly recommend for all fans of free-flowing psychedelic rock!

Highlights: Master Sleeps, Frigörande Musik

EDIT 2017-03-21:

I've written this review based on the download alone, since my CD was still on its way. It has just arrived and it's a nice little mini gatefold with an inner sleeve for the disc. Since the invention of the CD tray still isn't probably finished, this copy of a record cover has become my favorite form of packaging.

I also feel obliged to mention that I think the band used a fitting live photo on the inside, since they had contacted me, but my digital toycam pictures turned out to be too low-fi, haha. Damn, still have to wait for my first "Live at Roadburn" artwork credit. (Yeah, if I was working on that goal, I'd probably bring a "real" camera. On the other hand - I really dig my sweet little Harinezumi.)

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