12 Feb 2015

Vintage Cucumber ​/​ The Holy Cosmos Split E.P

Reviewed by Joseph Murphy

It seems only fair to dedicate half this review to Vintage Cucumber and the other to The Holy Cosmos, to best outline what makes this split perfect.
Vintage Cucumber:

Prolific German musician Johannes Schulz has been releasing ambient space rock since 2012 under the moniker Vintage Cucumber. (See reviews on his previous releases on this blog.)This split, like all his music, is available digitally at optional cost, which implies, whether intentional, a love of the creative process, production, and release of music. It also allows for a bit of freedom in what Schulz can do it seems. While united under the name, skill sets, and approach, each release has a unique feel; some focus on sonic experiments, others rhythm; some onslow-release ambience, others motorik jams. For long time followers of Schulz’s work, VC’s half of this split belongs mostly to the latter – but, of course, even those lines are masterfully blurred.

Opening track “Mutterherz” clocks in at just over eight minutes (not the longest VC track). It’s fast-paced, atmospheric and indebted to Krautrock of early years, particularly Neu! andHawkwind. Light, other-worldly vocals loop around the brooding bass groove and dense layers of heavily-delayed guitars. VC’s closing track, “Windhart” slows the tempo a bit, allowing for a lush exploration of the theme: keyboards sounds like wind chimes, rushes of white noise and cymbals like a breeze.

For those new listeners, this is great introduction to Vintage Cucumber. Be sure to take time to explore his impressive back catalog as well.

The Holy Cosmos:

From what I can find, The Holy Cosmos is a relatively new band from Mexico City. From there, the six musicians’ music tells everything else. They’re a space rock band – that emphasize the rock riffs at their roots – with melodic sensibilities. Their opening track, “Fields,” follows a traditional song structure, complete with lyrics and a chorus, but everything is stretched and slowed, allowing guitars to hum and multiply in all directions, vocals to echo, and the beat to become an expected and exact pulse among the layers. “Fields” is an excellent introduction to their work, plumbing the depths of standard rock formulas for its sonic goodness. Expect more great work from The Holy Cosmos – and hopefully soon.

Together, the two sides of this release offer modern space rock at its best. The Vintage Cucumber & The Holy Cosmos Split is available here.

Available as a name your price download here:

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