This is my first Vibracathedral record and thanks to the recommendation of Eric from Tapedrift Records I bought this a couple of weeks ago. Vibracathedral Orchestra are a long running experimental/avant-rock band from the UK. Each of their records is recorded live in the studio which certainly gives everything on Wisdom Thunderbolt an improvised feel. When I first put it on I thought I was in for a stack of those meandering, kitchen-sink, Dead C type tracks and I’ll be honest the first track of Wisdom Thunderbolt does absolutely nothing for me. Self indulgence in experimental music often equate with a level of dullness. The opening track suffers as a result.
So it was certainly a surprise when the second track “A Natural Fact” began. It’s an improvised swirling sub-continental ethno-drone track. It’s like some wonderful transcendent acid trip. It’s followed by “Order of the Broad Eraser” another transcendent track based around an ethnic drum beat that had me thinking of Sun City Girls. When the fourth track started the record was back in to the realm of drone and the improvised clatter of the Dead C although with greater focus and variety. One of the real stand outs is the fifth track, “Rainbow Whirlwind” which starts with that nauseating wonkiness that Black Dice do so well (I was thinking of “Snarly Yow” from Broken Ear Record).
Every track on Wisdom Thunderbolt is unique, and although it doesn’t start well it certainly gets a fuckload better. It’s actually a pretty good starting point of you were considering dabbling in experimental rock. I’ve already ordered my next Vibracathedral record (Pete thanks for the tip!)