Man, who would have believed that Munich, Germany – by most accounts the metropolitan capital of conservative politics in that country – would be giving birth to some of the scene’s best heavy psychedelia, anytime, anywhere? Well, thanks to the kind ministrations of Colour Haze’s Stefan Koglek and the mighty Elektrohasch label, it is. By now you’ve probably heard one of this year’s best albums, Colour Haze’s ‘Los Sounds de Krauts,’ a release that’s already put Elektrohasch on the map. ‘Rosula,’ the spankin’ new release by Hainloose, fits comfortably alongside Colour Haze in terms of high quality, although the sound is only marginally similar.
Hainloose is the heir to Kinch, a group of some small notoriety due to their split release with Shard. Singer and guitarist Haris went on to form Hainloose after Kinch’s demise, bringing along the Kinch songbook while he was at it. Several songs on the Shard split get a reworking by Hainloose, and the results are tighter versions, with songs averaging around 4 minutes each. In fact, ‘Rosula’ is tight as hell, with each song stripped of fat while at the same time rich in dynamics and memorable riffs, chased by Haris’ clean vocals. Overall, Hainloose not only reminds me of Kinch – with perhaps a bit Colour Haze at their most concise – but also of some of the best and cleanest of the Swedish scene, such as Astroqueen, Honcho, and even Mammoth Volume. As you might surmise, there’s lots of desert vibing, but there’s also a leavening of a difficult-to-define sensibility that somehow reminds me of early 70s FM American radio; you know, before it totally sucked. Produced by Colour Haze’s Koglek, the sound is rich and full.
‘Man and Buduh’ starts things off in typical style with a load of heavy riffing and just enough variety, followed by the somewhat Colour Haze-ish ‘Rampadampa,’ with its “Get ‘em High” chorus. ‘Ladies first’ introduces a more direct taste of the desert a la Unida, an influence also to be found in ‘Hooray.’ The vocal harmonies throughout remind me of Mammoth Volume. The disc closes with ‘Rains of July,’ a sweet tune that includes Koglek on guitar. Amongst all the heaviness, there’s also a kind of romantic feeling, as if this is the kind of music we’d all be sitting around the radio smoking to, if we lived in the utopia that underground music fanatics caught a glimpse of in the early 70s. Before it all went predictably bad, of course.
Well, its back again, if only for a moment. I predict that, given the high level of quality with which they are starting out, the Elektrohasch label will develop its own memorable heavy stoned-out sound as time unfolds. Not that all the groups will sound alike, not at all. Its just that labelmeister Koglek obviously has an ear for quality, and a knack for making it available for all those with ears to hear it. Get in on the ground floor and dig it now!