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2018-07-01

FATHER SKY MOTHER EARTH - Father Sky Mother Earth

Since my last (german) Father Sky Mother Earth review, my own band DruturuM has played a concert together with these two drone doomers, which will very hopefully not be the last, since this was a very fitting constellation. So now I'm in the always itchy position where you neither want your review of the band you personally know to be too biased, nor want to piss somebody off, haha.

Luckily in this case I think I'm just fine if I keep it honest.




FATHER SKY MOTHER EARTH - Father Sky Mother Earth (white vinyl) (2018)

Only two releases into their discography Father Sky Mother Earth are already confusing us with the question where to put this first vinyl album in chronological order, because on one hand this is the first physical release of their first album, but on the other they partly re-arranged and completely re-recorded it, so it could just as well count as number three (or 1a?).

It comes on very pretty white vinyl with the track "Father Sky" an side A and - surprise! - "Mother Earth" on side B, both longer than twenty-two minutes. But you shouldn't ignore the download card, because the digital version on Bandcamp (which are still the original recordings from 2016) also includes the twelve minute bonus track "III". 




Stylistically the band very purposely dwells inside the realm of meditative instrumental drone doom with sludgy edges and psychedlic and world-music influences.

Since I'm not into Om my go-to reference for this particular direction besides Zaum (ignoring the vocals) is Bong, whose recent album "Thought And Existence" I bought just in the same week as this one. I basically based my whole review of Father Sky Mother Earth's "Across The River Of Time" on this reference, which I still find as fitting as back then, especially since Bong have done so many different flavors of this minimalistic but also most epic subgenre on their albums.

Father Sky Mother Earth live in Rendsburg
But there are also some notable distictions to be pointed out. Unbelievably Father Sky Mother Earth are playing this music, which leans so much into the idea of amplifier worship - without any amps!
You cannot necessarily guess that from their recordings, but the guitar and bass tone is a little different here. It's hard to really pinpoint what it is. Is it sharper, more precise? Honestly I'm not sure. But when the music gets faster it's clear that the band is closer to fuzzy psychedelic rock than similar groups.

There are particular corners in the internet where this band and album are hyped to no end, calling this the album of the year already and even putting it on one the same level with the likes of Sunn O))). (You guys know who you are!)

Well, I can fully understand the enthusiasm, I think that goes a little too far. Sunn O))) are operating in a whole other universe of crushing bodily experience. And I also think that Bong are a larger, fuller and deeper beast.

That being said Father Sky Mother Earth are really not that far from the latter. In some aspects they are even ahead of Bong. Their slow intesifications might already have more layers. And coming from the circumstance of playing to pre-recorded rhythms live, their compositions seem to be more planned and detailed. Now, if that is rather a strength or a weakness in comparison of course stands to debate.

If this was a competion I would still see the UK in the lead before Northern Germany. Luckily it isn't.

However, this is some impressive, cathartic, monumental drone doom, which every friend of loud, hypnotic and lulling music should check out.


Highlights: Father Sky, Mother Earth


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