Black Space Riders Post “Movements” Video; Amoretum Vol. 1 out Next Week

Posted in Bootleg Theater on January 18th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

black space riders

If you happened to catch the last Black Space Riders video and you happen to catch this one, well, you’ll probably note that the two have about nothing in common. Ha. I bet you thought I was gonna tie it all together like there’s some overarching narrative or something like that. No dice! Take that, expectation!

Actually, if you want to think about it on another level, there is an overarching narrative between the clip previously posted for “Another Sort of Homecoming,”and it speaks in my mind not just to the appeal of Black Space Riders‘ current album — the forthcoming Amoretum Vol. 1 (review here), which, as the headline says above, is out next week — but also the appeal of the band as a whole: you just don’t ever really know where they’re going to go next.

To wit, “Another Sort of Homecoming,” the video, was based around an old sci-fi cartoon culled from the vast reaches of the public domain. “Movements?” Well, it’s nature footage, man’s interaction with the world around him, alternately patient and manic in its presentation — every bit a different vibe. And you know what? It’s perfect for the two songs. “Another Sort of Homecoming” is an uptempo dancer clocking in under four minutes, while “Movements” turns from its initial post-rock drift to build to furious intensity of chugging before finally evening out atop some still-pretty-frenetic percussive work. Time: eight minutes. The two songs — which on the record are separated only by the catchy push of “Soul Shelter (Inside of Me)” — would seem to have little to do with each other.

But that’s the point. It’s the scope of the thing, and that’s the story they’re telling about Amoretum Vol. 1 and Black Space Riders as a whole. I know this isn’t the highest-profile release that’s coming out this year, but I really think this band has something to offer, so I’m just going to keep writing about them as much as possible. Look for a vinyl giveaway and an interview with the band in the weeks to come.

Enjoy the clip for “Movements” in the meantime, followed by more from the PR wire:

Black Space Riders, “Movements” official video

Amoretum Vol. 1 will be released on January 26. The single can be purchased and the album pre-ordered on all digital platforms, including Bandcamp, as well as at the band shop: www.blackspaceriders.com/shop

Distribution partners:
Germany/Austria/Switzerland: Cargo Records
USA/ Canada: MVD Entertainment
UK: PHD (plastichead distribution)
BeNeLux: Suburban records
Scandinavia: Border Music
Italy: Goodfellas

BLACK SPACE RIDERS are:
JE: Lead Vocals, Guitars, Organ, Piano, Electronics
SEB: Lead vocals, Keyboards, Electronics
C.RIP: Drums, Percussion, Didgeridoo
SLI: Guitars
SAQ: Bass Guitar
MEI: Bass Guitar

Black Space Riders webstore

Black Space Riders on Thee Facebooks

Black Space Riders on Twitter

Black Space Riders on Bandcamp

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Review & Track Premiere: Black Space Riders, Amoretum Vol. 1

Posted in audiObelisk, Reviews on January 5th, 2018 by JJ Koczan

Black Space Riders Amoretum Vol 1

[Click play above to stream ‘Lovely Lovelie’ from Black Space Riders’ Amoretum Vol. 1. Album is out Jan. 26 and available to preorder here.]

Persistently adventurous German astro-prog metallers Black Space Riders seem to be taking stock of the world around them with Amoretum Vol. 1. This was arguably the case as well in 2015 when they examined Europe’s refugee crisis with the Refugeeum (review here) long-player and subsequent 2016 EP, Beyond Refugeeum (discussed here), but it’s a fast-spinning planet we live on and, frankly, there’s a lot to consider. Their conclusion seems to be it needs more love. One might advocate for universal sustainable income, an increase in the valuation of pubic education, free healthcare and a broad social safety net funded by a multinational corporate tax rate of 90 percent or higher enforced by a unified governmental body, but I suppose depending on how “love” is defined, they could well mean the same thing.

In any case, if the realization might lead listeners to think Black Space Riders — led, as ever, by guitarist/vocalist/organist/programmer JE and also featuring vocalist Seb, drummer/percussionist C.RIP, guitarist SLI, bassist SAQ and (more recent) bassist MEI — are making some grand turn toward sonic hippiedom, pushing into peaceful psychedelia to manifest and, well, spread the love, the assumption is simply incorrect. Even unto closer “Fellow Peacemakers” or the earlier “Come and Follow,” the titles of which sound innocuous enough, Black Space Riders maintain crisp, taut songcraft and aggressive execution. Their work, going back through 2014’s D:REI (discussed here), 2012’s Light is the New Black (review here) and their 2010 self-titled debut (review here), has only ever grown more complex, however, and as their fifth offering, Amoretum Vol. 1 is no different in this regard. It’s tough to guess where Black Space Riders will go sound-wise, but easy to know they’re always going to be pushing themselves forward.

That kind of reliability is rare, and five full-lengths deep into a prolific career, no doubt the band has elements of what they do that function as a core of their expression. Hooks abound throughout the cleverly-titled new album, arriving early amid the hard-driving riff of “Lovely Lovelie,” which soon enough complements its throaty opening lines with a responding guttural growl — dispelling any notions of adopting a laid back acid rock approach right quick — or the keyboard-fueled “Another Sort of Homecoming,” which is more melodically centered and upbeat in dance-ready fashion. Shifting between styles is familiar ground for Black Space Riders, and the core of progressive songwriting beneath — that synthesized line in “Another Sort of Homecoming” pulls my head right to Astrosoniq every time — is what allows them to tie aesthetically disparate pieces together across these eight tracks and 45 minutes.

black space riders

Transitions don’t always come easy, but there’s an underlying symmetry to Amoretum Vol. 1 that gradually reveals itself as an intention toward two vinyl sides, each comprised of four cuts, and sides A and B do manage to establish a flow of their own as they play through each toward their longest inclusion, first “Movements” (8:01) and later the aforementioned “Fellow Peacemakers” (7:29), which rounds out the album as a whole. Along the way, JE and company set a rich and diverse course, moving from the riffy push of “Lovely Lovelie” and side B’s leadoff “Come and Follow” into the wider breadths of pieces like “Soul Shelter (Inside of Me)” and “Fire! Fire! (Death of a Giant),” the two penultimate tracks of each half of the record mirroring each other even unto the inclusion of parentheses in their titles. There’s structure and then there’s structure.

That level of self-awareness and consideration has always kept me from thinking of Black Space Riders as a psychedelic band. They’re space metal, progressive and highly, respectably individual in their approach. The more complicated truth, however, is that despite the forward memorability of their hooks and the running keyboard lines throughout “Another Kind of Homecoming” or “Soul Shelter (Inside of Me)” and the maddening chug in the middle of “Movements,” the last push of “Fellow Peacemakers” and the almost hardcore delivery near the end of “Come and Follow,” the post-rock style of guitar on “Friends are Falling” and in moments of “Soul Shelter (Inside of Me),” the first half of “Fellow Peacemakers” and even the semi-reggae jangle near the open of “Fire! Fire! (Death of a Giant)” does add an aspect of flourish to Amoretum Vol. 1 that speaks to some measure of drift.

This, however, is one potent ingredient among many in their overarching sound, and Black Space Riders are no more limited by its confines than they would seem to be by any others, including the rigidity of the structures they impose on themselves. Reportedly, Amoretum Vol. 1 is to begin a series of releases functioning in the same thematic territory. One never likes to predict where a Vol. 2 might go in following a Vol. 1, if one surfaces at all, and a group with the scope of Black Space Riders makes doing so an even more potentially embarrassing opportunity to be wrong, but what has been true about their level of performance and craft all along has never been made plainer to see than it is here, and if that’s an expression of love as the band knows it, then it’s little wonder their output holds such resonance. Looking ahead to a New Year that will no doubt be filled with its shares of triumph and tragedy, Black Space Riders seem to have done well in capturing a richness of experience of at least a piece of this dizzying age.

Black Space Riders, “Another Sort of Homecoming” official video

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Black Space Riders Post “Another Sort of Homecoming” Video

Posted in Bootleg Theater on December 19th, 2017 by JJ Koczan

black space riders

Perennial progressives Black Space Riders have newly made public the cover art and tracklisting of their next album, Amoretum Vol. 1, which is set to hit ground on Jan. 26. The German space metallers will reportedly use their new offering, which follows last year’s EP, Beyond Refugeeum (discussed here) and the LP on which it was based, Refugeeum (review here), as the launch of a series of releases, looking in some way to counter the negativity of the current sociocultural sphere with a sense of positivity, love and — naturally — keyboards.

“Another Sort of Homecoming” is the first audio to be made public from Amoretum Vol. 1, and it pulses with vitality for its sub-four-minute runtime, a quick arrival after Black Space Riders Amoretum Vol 1the opening track “Lovely Lovelie” gives a surprisingly gruff introduction. More so than the partially-drifting “Movements” or the post-rock-into-prog-metal closer “Fellow Peacemakers” later on, “Another Sort of Homecoming” reminds distinctly of Astrosoniq‘s penchant for blending space weirdness and heavy rock vibes, but it’s just one look of many Black Space Riders ultimately give throughout Amoretum Vol. 1 — for example, they immediately back it up with the grand chorus of “Soul Shelter (Inside of Me)” — so don’t necessarily look for the rest of the album to sound just like this.

But then, that’s never been their way. Black Space Riders have always been a challenge for themselves and for listeners who might want to put them in one category or another, and as far as I’m concerned, that’s a huge part of their appeal. They remain defiant in that regard on Amoretum Vol. 1, about which I’ll hope to have more prior to its release late next month. For now, you can see the “Another Sort of Homecoming” video below, followed by more info culled from the PR wire.

I hope you enjoy:

Black Space Riders, “Another Sort of Homecoming” official video

German Riffonauts BLACK SPACE RIDERS have revealed the artwork and track list for forthcoming LP Amoretum Vol. 1. The band has also released the official video for the first single “Another Sort of Homecoming.”

Amoretum Vol. 1 will be released on January 26. The single can be purchased and the album pre-ordered on all digital platforms, including Bandcamp, as well as at the band shop: www.blackspaceriders.com/shop

PRE-ORDER the album now: http://blackspaceriders.com/shop

Band: BLACK SPACE RIDERS
Song: Another sort of homecoming
Album: AMORETUM Vol1 (2018)
Music/Lyrics: BLACK SPACE RIDERS (Jochen Engelking )
based on scenes from “SPACE ANGEL”
produced by Cambria Productions, CA (1962-1964)

Track List:
1. Lovely Lovelie
2. Another Sort of Homecoming
3. Soul Shelter (Inside of Me)
4. Movements
5. Come and Follow
6. Friends Are Falling
7. Fire! Fire! (Death of a Giant)
8. Fellow Peacemakers

BLACK SPACE RIDERS are:
JE: Lead Vocals, Guitars, Organ, Beats
SEB: Lead vocals
C.RIP: Drums, Percussion
SLI: Guitars
SAQ: Bass Guitar
HEVO: Additional Bass Guitar

Black Space Riders webstore

Black Space Riders on Thee Facebooks

Black Space Riders on Twitter

Black Space Riders on Bandcamp

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Black Space Riders to Release Amoretum Vol. 1 Jan. 26

Posted in Whathaveyou on November 21st, 2017 by JJ Koczan

Last we heard from adventurous German rockers Black Space Riders was this past Spring, and the Münster-based heavy progressives were heading into the studio to craft the follow-up to their 2016 EP, Beyond Refugeeum (discussed here), which itself was an answer to the previous long-player, Refugeeum (review here), the band’s tendency toward social commentary becoming more prevalent over time even as their sound correspondingly has grown less and less bound by notions of genre in pursuit of its own identity. I’ll admit happily that the description below of what Amoretum Vol. 1 holds in store has me intrigued, and while I’m not necessarily surprised to find them working in a two-part context, because prog and whatnot, I am interested to hear what develops across and between the pair of 2018 outings to come.

The PR wire has preliminary info:

black space riders

BLACK SPACE RIDERS Releasing New Album ‘Amoretum Vol. 1’ on January 26

German Riffonauts BLACK SPACE RIDERS are proud to announce the January 26th release of new album Amoretum Vol. 1.

The internationally acclaimed predecessor Refugeeum brought the band renown with its mixture of thoughtful, sensitive themes and hard, atmospheric rock. Two years have passed since then, two years in which the world has not necessarily become a better place in the eyes of most people.

War, terror, displacement, destruction, rejection and nationalism dominate the headlines. Or, as a wise little green fellow once said: “Fear is the path to the dark side. Fear leads to anger. Anger leads to hate. Hate leads to suffering.”

“All you need is love”, countered the BEATLES in 1967. The response of BLACK SPACE RIDERS in 2018 is Amoretum, a made-up word comprising “amor” and “arboretum” to symbolize a protective garden and a germ seed of love. And so the new song cycle of BLACK SPACE RIDERS is all about the conflict between fear-hate-rejection-darkness on the one hand, and love-empathy-care-light on the other. For, how else should we overcome hate, if not with love?

Musically, this conflict is consistently put into practice by a band that beats its own path and is constantly developing. The electronic experiments of the Beyond Regugeeum EP of 2016 have been reduced sonically and cleverly integrated into the powerfully sounding songs. Between fat, dirty riffs and trippy delays, everything that sounds good is allowed; the album is interspersed with a flowing groove throughout and an ever-present atmosphere that embraces the listener. Heavy, sometimes proggy, often psychedelic, always engaging and almost catchy and danceable, Amoretum Vol. 1 takes us by the hand, shows us the dark side, and then wants to give us the hope back that we so often painfully miss.

The album flows from song to song as if from a single cast. The listener wonders after 45 minutes whether everything is really already over, and wants to go back to the beginning again immediately.

But of course everything is not over after 45 minutes in the world of BLACK SPACE RIDERS. The band also announces a second chapter for 2018 … Amoretum Vol. 2 is waiting for us, while we are looking forward to Amoretum Vol 1.

Distribution partners:
Germany/Austria/Switzerland: Cargo Records
USA/ Canada: MVD Entertainment
UK: PHD (plastichead distribution)
BeNeLux: Suburban records
Scandinavia: Border Music
Italy: Goodfellas
BLACK SPACE RIDERS are:

JE: Lead Vocals, Guitars, Organ, Beats
SEB: Lead vocals
C.RIP: Drums, Percussion
SLI: Guitars
SAQ: Bass Guitar
HEVO: Additional Bass Guitar

www.blackspaceriders.com
Twitter.com/BlackSpaceRider
www.facebook.com/BlackSpaceRiders
www.youtube.com/user/blackspaceriders

Black Space Riders, Beyond Refugeeum (2016)

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