Cosmonaut on Vacation - Let the Moment Land
Cosmonaut on Vacation is space-pop a.k.a echo-ey and melodic rock-and-roll played loud and proud. Full stop.
So here’s the deal: this record is gonna sound a little different. Like the Dorado record earlier this year (and perhaps another record or two to come), this one is born from the wildly inventive, collaborative world of the Birmingham (yes, Alabama) Indie rock scene. In May 2011, Greg Slamen, formerly of Through the Sparks and Stateside, decided to start his own band and his own brand of spaced-out, psychedelic rock and roll. Influenced by the whimsy of the Kinks, attitude of the Brian Jonestown Massacre, the swagger of Oasis and the melodic arrangements of Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd, Slamen twisted seemingly simple chords into songs that ring fresh and inspired. He’s not trying to reinvent the wheel. He just wants to drive the goddamn thing until they fall off.
Like his Through The Sparks brethren, Slamen can be a studio rat. “I love recording, even if it’s stressful at times. I recorded a few tracks at [Les] Nuby’s (Vulture Whale) Ol’ Elegante [studio] and a few more at Jody Nelson’s (Through The Sparks / Dorado) Alamalibu, and a couple of the tracks — those electronic numbers — I did those on my laptop. [The recording process] was the fun part for sure. It’s the mixing and mastering that was excruciatingly but necessarily tedious.”
“Les Nuby was very supportive from the beginning when I told him about this idea that I wanted to make a solo record (of sorts!). He’s been a sounding board and encouraging voice throughout the process of getting this record together— everything from advice on the demos, to engineering some of the songs, to giving me feedback on the masters when I was done with the record. The same is true of Jody Nelson. And I should mention Shawn Avery. He’s got the ears and some wild ideas about production. He definitely had some influence on the way this thing sounded.” Slamen found inspiration in the feedback, and, as he puts it, “ decided to take my record a bit more seriously after that. Like pizza boxes, empty beer bottles, and lots of standing around in my underwear mixing and doing retakes instead of sleeping and spending time with friends and family. “
This attention gave forth a bizarre, crunchy, spacey throwback of a record – an album from the time when albums mattered. The sounds of a strange journey, as one might imagine if a mission-weary 1980s Cosmonaut took a much needed vacation in a Adriatic beach town. Come along – it is going to be fun.
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