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Arc of Ascent - Circle of the Sun (IMPORT) (CD)

Featuring Craig Williamson (Lamp of the Universe, Datura).

It was clear from the last Lamp of the Universe record, Acid Mantra, that Kiwi psychedelicist Craig Williamson was looking to do something a little more structured. Williamson, who cut his riffing teeth playing in underrated head rockers Datura, emerges from the cosmic ether now as bassist/vocalist/etc. in the trio Arc of Ascent, which continues some of Lamp of the Universe’s psychedelic exploration, but puts said psychedelia — which comes on thanks to sitar, tanpura, synths, bells, chanting, and so forth; all of which are credited to Williamson — in a more outwardly heavy context. Make no mistake, we’re still reaching out to the farthest uncharted regions of spiritual innerspace, but now we’re doing it with thick guitar riffs! Never know what you’ve been missing until you find it.

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Arc of Ascent - The Higher Key (IMPORT) (CD)



It was clear from the last Lamp of the Universe record, Acid Mantra, that Kiwi psychedelicist Craig Williamson was looking to do something a little more structured. Williamson, who cut his riffing teeth playing in underrated head rockers Datura, emerges from the cosmic ether now as bassist/vocalist/etc. in the trio Arc of Ascent, which continues some of Lamp of the Universe’s psychedelic exploration, but puts said psychedelia in a more outwardly heavy context.

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Datura - All is One (Re-issue) (IMPORT) (CD)

Includes a bonus track and a hidden track!

WOW! Anyone into Kyuss, Monster Magnet, Sleep and heavy, HEAVY guitar riffs will absolutely eat this one up! GREAT spaced out stoner rock very similar to Kyuss. THIS is the record Kyuss should have made after "Blues For The Red Sun" most definitely!

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Datura - Visions for the Celestial (Re-issue) (IMPORT) (CD)



This is a cosmic stoner groove bliss-out at its very best. Visions for the Celestial is a journey that has a natural flow and growth to it as it develops from bass heavy stoner grooves to cosmic bliss out and if you reach for the replay button on reaching the end go with the flow and do it.

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Lamp of the Universe - Acid Mantra (IMPORT) (CD)



The blending of acoustic and electric guitars, mellotrons, drones, the subcontinental instrumentation, banjo and Williamson’s wispy vocals as presented on Acid Mantra means that the shroom-worship has taken on new dimensions previously unknown to Lamp of the Universe. This strain of exploration, at least as in regards to this album, is rich-sounding and all the various moods and styles play off each other to create an encompassing experience for the listener. If Williamson is out to further his own creative reaches, then it’s a mission I’m ready to support any way I can. For anyone new to the band, this is the place to start.

Lamp of the Universe (aka Craig Williamson) creates an early 70's styled psychedelic eastern hippy acid folk music for the body mind and spirit. 2009 sees Lamp of the Universe in its 10th year, begining in 1999, and Acid Mantra is his 7th album overall. This will please anyone familar with his early albums "The Cosmic Union" or "Echo in Light", having for the most part a similar feel to those albums but with musical 'hints' or reminders from later albums such as "Heru", It's all here brothers and sisters. Interestingly it's the most 'song oriented' album since "Earth, Spirit & Sky" and probably the most diverse since the aforementioned "Echo In Light". Accoustic guitars, sitars, beauitful fragile vocals, fuzz guitar, mellotron and a whole range of exotic instruments blend together to create a cosmic atmosphere of the highest order!

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Lamp of the Universe - From the Mystic Rays of Astrological Light (IMPORT) (CD)



Featuring four long instrumentals, this album is the perfect follow-up to previous album Heru, an album that was soaked in a lysergic eastern vibe making for some excellent late-night meditations. On this release the raga-esque feel is replaced by deep inner space drones, tempered by the swirl of analogue synths, echoed percussion and chanted voices that add warmth to the sound. On this album Craig Williamson may have created his masterpiece, the album exploring the ancient search for hidden meaning, trying to find our rightful place in the universe. This is cosmic music of the highest order and needs concentrated listening before all its secrets are revealed.

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Lamp of the Universe - Heru (IMPORT) (CD)



Opening with the eastern drone of the sitar, this is a beautiful and mesmerising album filled with gentle and drifting music that relaxes and energises the listener simultaneously. Split into seven sections, that gently merge together, the album is an hour long trip into a state of bliss sounding like a long lost kraut rock dream sequence, or some of the finer moments from Quintessence. After the sublime opening drone, the music is filled out with softly pulsing tabla and bird-like synthesisers, which add a hypnotic tinge to the piece, something that is reinforced as more and more layers of sound are introduced until everything else becomes irrelevant, the drones shaping time itself.

Heru is the follow up to Echo In Light, itself a fine album, on which you can hear the seeds of Heru being sown. As the album moves forward, the guitar takes over leading us through the landscape with some exquisite playing that complements the atmospheric backdrop perfectly, and is as relaxing as it is emotional, creating some truly psychedelic music that is essential headphone listening. In these stress filled times, this album offers sanctuary, a place to hide when life is too much.

One man sonic universe, Craig Williamson employs: electric guitar, bass guitar, drums, tablas, choir-like layers of voice, sitar, bowed guitar & sitar, tamboura, tapes, rain pipe, effects, and keyboards to weave the single piece that is Heru. Though it is discreetly divided into seven tracks (Heru parts 1-7) , they all flow into one another so as not to interupt the dream or the dreamer.

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Lamp of the Universe - The Inner Light of Revelation (IMPORT) (CD)



Lamp Of The Universe is Craig Williamson from New Zealand, playing an esoteric form of ritual-like psych folk, eastern trance and acid rock for the body mind and spirit. On LP, his album 'Inner Light Of Revel' features eight songs that are timeless and mystical in feel. Acoustic and electric guitars, sitar, mellotron and blissed out vocals weave in and out of each song, trance-like and taking the listener on another great journey.

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Lamp of the Universe - Transcendence (IMPORT) (CD)



Formed in 1999, Lamp of the Universe is a cosmic hippy acid folk/psychedelic/space rock one-man project of Craig Williamson, from New Zealand.

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Shallow Grave - Self Titled (IMPORT) (CD)



New Zealand has a twisted heart filled with endless wrath and frustration. That’s ably reflected in the country’s most ill-omened metal, and the self-titled debut from Shallow Grave captures that anger and unease flawlessly. The Auckland-based four-piece amplifies the malevolence that skulks beneath the façade of society in an unsettling, premonitory form—and does so with a substantial amount of spiteful exuberance.

All that grimness makes for engrossing doomsday metal. Such ominous themes have universal appeal, and Shallow Grave’s atmospheric sludge and doom will resonate with fans of distortion-heavy voyages into pits of damnation. The band fuses Grief’s scruffy poundage with Khanate’s evilest reverberations, and binds that to Neurosis’s obstinate artistry. Add in a mutilated, psychedelic undercurrent, and you’re getting close to the essence of Shallow Grave’s sound. It’s prowling sludge covered in festering sores being lanced by the rusty scalpel of aberrant doom (while the stench of post-metal’s rotting corpse lingers).

They’re committed to constructing deadfalls of depravity, with a sound that’s as heavy as the themes they tackle. In the end, that’s what makes Shallow Grave worth your time—the combination of hulking, bitter and viscid sounds echo and attack from all sides. And with biographical details about the band being scant, there’s an insistence that the message is what counts here first and foremost—and it’s clear that’s a communiqué oozing corruption. Up front you’ll find the gut-punch of downtempo deviant sludge, while lurking in the shadows is the venom. Shallow Grave is pernicious, slow-baked and hypnotizing poison, working its way under the skin.

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