Who is the band? What is their history? What motivates them?
“1969 - Hawkwind formed by former London busker Dave Brock who remains at the helm today”.
“1970 - The band appeared outside the perimeter fence of the Isle of Wight Festival and played at the first Glastonbury Festival. Hawkwind’s first single, “Hurry on Sundown”, was also released followed by the self titled debut album, ‘HAWKWIND’”.
“1972 – Band record and release their trademark single “Silver Machine”, featuring Lemmy on vocals, a huge hit that brings band to the attention of the wider public and has since been used in commercials for Mazda cars and Red Square vodka drink. Around the same time various contributors became involved in creative process, these included sci-fi author Michael Moorcock, poet and visionary Bob Calvert, designer ‘Barney Bubbles’ and lighting engineer ‘Liquid Len. Band tour the USA for the first time”.
“1980 – Release 2 top 10 albums, Live 79 and Levitation, the latter sees former Cream member Ginger Baker on drumming duties”.
“Early 00’s - Appear on the TV show Top 10 (prog rock edition) and tour Australia for first time. Iconic vocalist Arthur Brown makes various guest appearances at live shows. In 2002 Hawkwind hold the first “Hawkfest”, a 3 day, family friendly event headlined by the band”.
“2010 – Release new album – Blood Of the Earth”.
“Throughout their career the band also have continued to perform at numerous free concerts, most famously the STONEHENGE festival, and have supported many and various charities, including SHELTER, GREENPEACE, TRAVELLERS AID TRUST, BRAINSCAN, FREE TIBET CAMPAIGN, SAVE ENDANGERED SPECIES and SEA SHEPHERD” (Source: Hawkwind.com, 2010).
1. Seahawks – “I will become master of the universe.” An opening line excerpt to open this song and album. Then some sounds like maybe light saber or laser blade sounds mixed with sounds of the ocean. Then the synths, drums and heavy lead electric take over. Driving wild synth sounds with some muttered background sounding vocals. All elements working together driving this synthesizer lead caravan of sound with guitar riffs flowing all around.
2. Blood Of The Earth – This title track opens with dreamy synths and ocean sounds with heavenly choir effects. It sounds nice. Almost sounds like something from the soundtrack of 2001 A Space Odyssey. Then spoken word, synthesized, and echoed, with the sound of a man running scared.
3. Wraith – Power lead, drums, wild synth keys fit within a driving almost punk – like fast paced rhythm. Loads of power chords fit neatly around spaced out synths and drums.
4. Green Machine – Symphonic, almost orchestral opening to this one. Nice. Then a guitar lick that sounds like a gunshot before blistering cool lead electric. A nice quiet cool synth enters to calm with gently flowing guitar riffs about.
5. Inner Visions – More cool synths, drums, and lead electric riffs, this time building a more defined rhythm. Vocals are added, but are hard to hear with all the spacey synth work going on. “I have inner visions of you.”
6. Sweet Obsession – A splash of water and the running drums begin, supported by guitar riffs and that magic synth. “I’m standing at the station waiting.” “Your confession, my sweet obsession.” The guitars and running drums setting a fast melody.
7. Comfy Chair – More cool synths and lead acoustic riffs interjected with some melody and a slower rhythm. Mostly cool synthesized space music sounding Arabian or Middle Eastern at times.
8. Prometheus – Launching lead electric riffs along with the story of Prometheus delivered with vocal lead. Cool lead riffs and drums, along with those spacey synths everywhere. There is a sitar sound in parts of this instrumental section that sounds great along with the cool lead electric.
9. You’d Better Believe It – This one has a real fast punk, Chameleons UK, sound to it. Fast moving guitar and drums rocketing out of the gate. “It’s so easy to say.” One of the better tracks on the album. Later it slows down and layers on the spacey synths and slow lead riffs. Later, it picks back up pace and returns to its original sound.
10. Sentinel – More cool spacey synths, this time filling the soundscape. The lead guitar pops in with riffs and more vocals. “Look for the sign.” “How many more times have we heard the echo of the future?”
11. Starshine (Bonus Track) - More cool spacey synths and percussion sounds. Otherworldly space effects and noises surrounding the production. More of a New Age type of reflective piece. Similar to Vangelis or Larry Fast. Then the guitars come soaring in. Cool spacey effects and mind relaxing sounds.
Rating: 8/10 – Cool spacey synths with some equally cool guitar riffs. Good spaced out music to take you away from the doldrums of reality. If you are already a fan of the band, then this album will add to your collection nicely. If you are new to the band, this will be a great introduction album to the caliber of music they create.
Reviewed by Prof on August 8th, 2010