A personal highlight of 2008 was discovering Farflung.
Their album, A Wound in Eternity, conjured up memories of John McBain-era Monster Magnet and the beginning of my long-term relationship with the much maligned state of New Jersey. But it turns out that I was no pioneer. Farflung released their first album in 1995 and are located right here in Los Angeles. So after feeling pretty inadequate for a while, I found comfort that the encyclopedic staff at Aquarius Records was feeling the same way:
It a bit weird we've never listed any records by LA space rockers Farflung. They've been plugging away for almost 12 years, and A Wound In Eternity is in fact record number 12. At least one or two of us here have some old FF records in our collection, regardless, it's finally time to right this very wrong.
Self proclaimed the heaviest and trippiest FF record yet, A Wound In Eternity is indeed both trippy and heavy, due possibly to the recent addition of various new members, their sound as always borrows heavily from Hawkwind, Monster Magnet, Kyuss, the usual heavies, but with their own distinct twist, and listening to this now, we're feeling a definite glam vibe, a bit of garagey-stomp, really catchy and hooky, but just the tone and the arrangement is sort of reminiscent of classic seventies glam, albeit super charged and a bit more drugged up and spaced out. Which is probably why we hear so much Monster Magnet in FF's sound, they have a similar over the top glamrock meets space metal crunch.
Chunky riffs, propulsive rhythms, dramatic vocals, all wound up into a set-the-controls-for-the-heart-of-the-sun stoner psych space rock blowout. The tracks often burn slow, sometimes pounding away, other times drifting lazily through space, but most of them culminate in huge drone-y psychedelic freakout outros, everything wrapped in swirls of FX, the guitars blossoming like supernovas, the drums growing more and more chaotic. A few tracks have a definite Circle vibe going on too, the group locked into super mesmerizing looped hypnorock grooves, but even then, the band eventually looses themselves from gravity, drifting into the stratosphere, only to burn out in a blaze of blinding, deafening distorted effects drenched buzz...
No longer feeling so alone, I set off on mission to see if they could pull their sound off live. But as far as I know, they played only two shows the rest of 2008, both in Echo Park in the last weekend of September. The first one, with NYC's White Hills, was reportedly shut down mid-set by the police due to the excessive volume. Nice. The following night at the Echo, they opened for Spectrum (aka Sonic Boom of Spacemen 3). Two killer shows and I missed them both because I was fucking around in Austin. Since then, the only show posted on their Myspace site is a appearance at this year's Roadburn Festival. And while Tilburg is my Mecca, I may be denied my pilgrimage there this year, and left frustrated that Farflung has apparently got nothing local going on. Until now - a sign of hope. Surfing around I came across this:
No confirmation from Farflung or the venue. But if this is the real deal, I can say I accomplished something in 2009. Bordello is a beautiful and unexpected setting, and its location basically ensures there will be no noise complaints. You should be there.
The Swords of Fatima stopped by to let us know that Farflung will be performing with them at their record release party at Bordello, although without guitarist Michael Esther. That's not enough to keep me away.