It’s Friday. What better way to start your Friday than to melt your frontal lobe with some time and space-altering, free-form psych jams? Sure it’s only 7am but who cares? Get that coffee with a triple shot of espresso and soundtrack that morning commute with Causa Sui. In particular, let’s get the weekend going with Causa Sui’s head expanding 2014 Pewt’r Sessions 3.
Causa Sui’s Pewt’r Sessions were a series of three albums the band recorded with American musician Ron Schneiderman. Where Summer Sessions basked in sun-baked jams and spaced-out bliss, Pewt’r Sessions indulged the darker side. Krautrock vibes and motorik beats permeated tracks like Pewt’r Sessions 2‘s “Gelassenheit”, while Pewt’r Sessions 1′s “Mating Call” sounds like The Stooges on a “Walk Don’t Run” kick with some blots of acid thrown in for good measure. “Wasted Milk” is serious guitar squall. Imagine The Experience jamming with the Mothers Of Invention. Hear it? Good. “Garden Of Forking Paths” off Pewt’r Sessions 2
is a mind-expanding journey to the heart of the astral plane. This is very much in the vein of Eternal Tapestry’s weedy, soggy jams, but with less humid funk and more fiery indignation.
So the first two Pewt’r Sessions were heady sonic experiments that went from languid, Haight-Ashbury acid fixes to Berlin sound excursions at the drop of a needle. On Pewt’r Sessions 3 I feel that things got deeper, darker, more meditative, and just more precise on every level.
When I first heard opening track “Abyssal Plain”(here’s my original review of the album from 2014) I immediately thought of electric Miles. There’s this feeling of electricity that hovers over the song, like tension that builds before a great storm hits. It’s that place where sheering light and bruised black come together to offer the most beautiful and complex contradictions in nature. The song builds and cymbal and tom fills as guitar lines slither around each other before the song comes together into this almost doom metal wall of noise. It feels more purposeful than what we’ve heard before. There’s fire in there.
“Eutopia” is a break in the clouds. It’s bouncing buoys in stuttering waters as the next build of crushing waves, shattering thunder, and eviscerating lightning hit. The drums, guitars, organ and bass all come together quite beautifully. They prepare us for what comes next.
“Incipiency Suite” could very well be the most epic track Causa Sui have committed to tape. Coming in at over 26 minutes, “Incipiency Suite” is carried initially by the fusion-infused rock drumming of Jakob Skott. He brings layers of noise and dissonance into sharp focus as the song works its way into a hell of a rocker. Once again Bitches Brew-era Miles comes to mind as electric piano becomes wild and woolly and the guitars begin to emulate Miles’ Crybaby Wah-effected horn. This is chaotic and numbing. Skott’s drums and Kahr’s bass lock in to give us some serious voodoo and On The Corner-like funk while Munk, Schneiderman, and Rasmussen kick it into interstellar overdrive with otherworldly noises that feel like a panic attack painted with stompboxes and buzzing electrical circuits. The song finds this peaceful center eventually, allowing the song to breathe and rise over the chaos.
Clocking in at only three tracks this is the shortest Pewt’r Sessions, but in terms of dense layers of sound and overall heady atmosphere this one feels like the most epic Pewt’r yet. By this point the guys in Causa Sui had ventured out to explore on their own, creating new sounds and vibes. When they returned to the Causa Sui fold with fellow music explorer Ron Schneiderman things came out on a whole new level. Pewt’r Sessions 3 took the Causa Sui sound and turned it inside out. Free-form, exploratory, and acid-burnt musical madness abound, it plays like a slow burn psychic meltdown.
But in the best way possible.