Greetings from Beautiful San Kazakgascar
-Review in Psychotropic -"Dallas via Damascus" starts off things with very good, rather fast and heavy psych rock and the clarinet melodies bring in a bit of Eastern flavor. "Mosquitoes and Gnats" is a slower, Eastern European or Turkish styled, a bit mystical track with funny vocals and some rather heavy guitar stuff. The creeping, garage styled "Wink Eye, Stink Eye" is like from a Tarantino movie. "Tuk Tuk to Nowhere" includes a lot of silly vocals and doesn't really do the trick for me. Then there is the peaceful "El Rio Flaco" that has pretty vocals and no drums. "National Anthem of San Kazakgascar" is a great, mid-tempo psych rocker with chanting vocals and East European influences. I'm somehow also reminded of Velvet Underground... "Shut!" has a lot of ethnic moods and also reminds me a bit of Black Sun Ensemble. The longest (6:17) track on the album is the hypnotic, at first instrumental "Reign of Yans" that might also be the best track getting close to folk. A very nice atmosphere! In the end we've still got the excellent "Crooked Ladders" that includes both softer moods as well as more energetic going. It's a very good ending for this interesting and pretty original album. Review in SN&R The 10 songs on Greetings From Beautiful San Kazakgascar, their debut album, continue this fine drone-rock tradition. The band-Brewer on guitar, Greg Hain on bass, Paul Takushi on percussion and Mike Woo on clarinet-an instrumenthat'sts presence in modern popular music is sorely missed-churn up an amplified exotic din that at times comes off like the garage bongload version of Martin Denny's 1950s appropriations of Polynesian musical forms. If San Kazakgascar's "Mosquitoes and Gnats" isn't a modern update of Denny's "Tsetse Fly," at least philosophically... Review in ZGun San Kazakgascar come from Sacramento and, though they developed outside the "Post Asiatic" scene they share much of the same aesthetic. The songs are cleverly crafted and the playing is excellent. Jed Brewer is a hell of a guitarist who has a nice handle on the Middle Easternisms and when these guys get going it is pretty special.