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ACID MOTHERS TEMPLE & THE MELTING PARAISO U.F.O. and KILTER feat. ANDROMEDA ANARCHIA live onboard the MS Stubnitz, Hamburg (November 18th 2022)

Acid Mothers Temple & don't let me write that whole name everytime I mention them have quite a legendary reputation among psychedelic rock fans, yet for me they were an almost blank canvas. The Japanese band is just so prolific (the German print zine Eclipsed even has its own monthly news column for them), that their catalogue feels kind of daunting... where to begin?
But judging from the little I knew there was no doubt that they would be a worthwhile live experience, so I picked up my brother with the ticket as a belated birthday gift and went into this night on the MS Stubnitz with deliberately little preparation.


In that spirit it was only the day before that I realized the support band would be featuring Imperial Triumphant drummer Kenny Grohowski and their regular guest singer Andromeda Anarchia. Add the basic information that Kilter are a bonkers bass/drums/sax avantgarde jazz metal band and you already know that this should be good.

It was good indeed! Naturally there were some parallels to the last band I had seen on this ship the week before, Albatre, yet what the New York trio jazzhammered through the listener's brain relied less on relentless repetition, but on complete rhythmic unpredictability and (planned!) chaos. After a couple of pieces of this mindfuckery the band was joined by the singer and they presented excerpts from a forthcoming dramatic heavy noise jazz concept work, on which Andromeda Anarchia showcased her whole crazy range between screeches, growls and operatic vocals.

A great show. And the booming sound of that baritone sorry, even bass saxophone alone! Yum!


Phew, how do I even start with this one? If you picked it apart by musical components this show of guitar maniac Kawabata Makoto and his perfectly attuned band probably was quite overseeable. But once you consider the finesse of gradual changes, the sick mushroomy vibes and the sheer energy of the rhythm section holding this krauty, jazznoisy space rock freak-out together, this performance soon enters the category of man you just had to be there!

The pattern recurred: For an eternity (I actually have no clue how long the whole set lasted, because I didn't check and lost all track of time) Acid Mothers Temple stayed on this one simple guitar lick, while nothing and everything happened at once. With subtle wizardry grooves and time signatures changed, sometimes only noticeable after it had already occured, while the theme itself just kept going and going... until Makoto suddenly decided that it was time for a completely mental solo which dashed everything into chaos - only to come back just when you thought that all was lost in wild rock ecstasy.

Especially mentionable was the second track, where the band went far off the rails, while the guru was fixing an effect pedal problem. When he was done the song was finished, there was a break... and they fucking continued that thing which already was going for... what? Fifteen minutes at least? Like I said, no track of time. But even though it felt a little like fuck, let's play the whole thing again, it was also very different. Oh the joys of hypnotic psych music!

After ten days and a year of tripping bliss the show was over, but the audience refused to believe it. While the band had long left the stage and was already selling merch, the crowd was still blue man group stomping on the ground for an encore, making the hull of the whole ship vibrate just like the voluminous drone of synth and bass had done before. The Hafen City neighbours, who mainly settled here to complain about noise, were certainly happy.

Not as happy as we though. This was awesome!

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