Bardo Pond - Peace on Venus

by Andy Brown Rating:8 Release Date:2013-10-28

Bardo Pond's ninth studio album, Peace on Venus couldn't be mistaken for any other band. Since the early 90s, Isobel Sollenberger and her psychedelic cohorts have been making wonderfully distinctive records. Sollenberger's ethereal vocals sit low in the mix as waves of haze and blurry distortion cascade around her. These waves of heavy sound are occasionally punctuated by a well-placed flute solo; a trick that lends an almost Wicker Man-type vibe to proceedings.

The cover artwork partly prepares you for what's to come; a group of naked women presumably in some kind of pagan ceremony and framed by a pentagram. This isn't going to be like the latest Franz Ferdinand record. What follows is five epic tracks of sludgy, yet undeniably beautiful psychedelia. It's heavy but not in a harsh way, the sounds washing over the speakers like waves of molasses.

There's definitely a lo-fi approach to the production which gives Peace on Venus the immediacy of a band practice. You're lowered down into the band's hazy world from the first note and it's a world where time and space seem to lose meaning. You're on Bardo Pond's time now.

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