Joe Turner, late of the Boston space folk quartet Abunai!, makes his solo LP debut with "Between Two Seconds," a potent dose of acid pop and space rock that manages to bring some of the finest aspects of West Coast 60s psych into the present, along with a healthy dose of post Creation guitar noise. Expanded from an originally self-released EP, this 11 song epic sees the sound canvas blown up larger, combining familiar (in a good way!), mid-tempo psych pop gems with further-reaching heavy jams, just as Abunai! did before, and Spacemen 3 and Bevis Frond did before them. In other words, Turner is in strong company here.
Opener ?Waking Dream? is a tonal waterfall of spaced out transcendence with endless layered guitars and effects, bass and drums cycling in a crescendo of droning fuzz before the mid-tempo acid pop of ?When Will You Wake Up?? jolts the listener out of said trance with what can be taken as an indictment against a sleepwalking consumerist society, or maybe just a wake up call to one slightly deluded individual. Either way works for me. ?Coordinate Zero? indulges in an obvious affinity for the first few Who albums, with it?s stop-start moddish rhythms and crashing drums recalling ?I Can?t Explain? to brain-tickling effect, but those layered harmonies, dipped in just enough delay to make ?em sound like God?s whispering in the ears?pure Turner.
As is the case with Abunai!, it?s the harmonies and arrangements that reveal the cosmic depth of this psych/space rock. Though the songs are dressed up in some mighty sparkly sequins, the melodies still shine in their own right. ?Dollar Star? is a fine example?starting with a shimmering nod to classic CSNY with rich multi-part vocals before segueing into a monster heavy psych jam that any Bevis Frond fan (or early Flaming Lips fan for that matter) would agree with. There?s one more of the sunnier pop gems (?Hills of Pennsylvania,? an indie guitar stab at the Monkees?), but the second half of "Between Two Seconds" is cast in a darker, more reflective shadow, ultimately making the whole thing a more moving and thematically cohesive work.
The fact that these songs are all delivered as such striking, living psych pop odes?dealing with love, trauma, adjusting, getting it right and wrong?makes it an album that rings with the kind of no frills honesty that?s been so appealing on later Bevis Frond albums. No pretensions, no blown opportunities, just a lot of heart and creativity that?s actually worthy of your precious time. 8/10 -- Lee Jackson (25 May, 2005)