sorted magazine - issue 3

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spiritualised - ladies and gentlemen, we are floating in space

spiritualised are back just in time with an extra big dose of aural medicine. following on from 1992's excellent "laser guided melodies" and '95's "pure phase", this current offering continues in the vein of sublimely-crafted, ambient-meets-rock soundscapes. jason pierce's lazy vocals float over a world of electronic-fuzz harmonies, crashing rhythms and cascading horns.

starting off gently, each track builds to a crescendo of mind-blowing guitar-adrenalised beauty, laying waste to your sense of gravity and showing that amid the noise and despair, there's something magical underneath.

sometimes the magic is hard to find, especially on the lengthy, down-beat "cop shoot cop", which descends into pure chaos in the middle, and on the haunting electric drones of "the individual".

at times it seems that pierce is purposefully making it difficult for the listener, but only so that he can knock them down with the aching laments of "broken dream" and the full-on raging psychedelia of "come together" and "i think i'm in love". no pain, no gain, for every piece of orchestrated dementia, there's a soothing exorcism.

a very personal record, full of references to pierce's chemical intake, but probably the most rewarding listening experience of the year. catch them live.

by niall byrne