Brussel’s based DIY label Exag’ Records recently sent me the debut EP of Phoenician Drive, a name I’d not come across before, although it turns out they are playing fairly local soon at the Bristol Psych Fest at the Trinity on 8th July 2017. With no disrespect to the rest of the festival line-up (it’s a good one), I’d be tempted to go just to see them live.
They were formed in 2015 by Chilean percussionist Diego Moscoso and, as the ancient Semitic name suggests, are heavily influenced by Middle Eastern music. It’s that Oriental-Kraut fusion which really made such a big impression on first listen with the inclusion of the oud, rek and other Eastern percussions giving them a really engaging and hypnotic sound.
To quote from the label’s description…in the footsteps of earlier East-West musical blendings from the 70’s like Erkin Koray or Orient Express, and under the influence of the German kraut-rock scene (Neu!, Can, Faust, …) and the 60’s soundtrack composers, Phoenician Drive searches the hypnotic trance based on distorted oriental grooves.
Their debut EP, Two Coins, is out now and available via Bandcamp (there’s also a demo available). Just take a listen to Two Coins for the Boatman, I’ve had it on repeat for most of this week. They’re a genuinely remarkable and exciting band and whilst they may be inspired by the footprints of past pioneers, to me, they sound fresh…they’re beating ahead into a new frontier and long may they continue to do so. Turn it up loud…
Phoenician Drive are:
Diego Moscoso (derbuka/rek)
Matthieu Peyraud (bass/vocals)
Martin Rault (drums)
Gaspard Vanardois (oud/banjo)
Joaquin Garcia Bermudes (guitar)
Valerian Meunier (guitar/vocals)
See them at Bristol PsychFest: http://bristolpsychfest.com/product/bristol-psych-fest-iv-early-bird-ticket/