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MAGNET #48, Jan/Feb 2001



It might take the fanciful tag team of noted U.K. Krautrock authority Julian Cope and MAGNET's Dr. Fred Mills a couple weeks (and a case of Wild Turkey) to unravel the tangled ball of Teutonic influences poking from the shagpile of Abunai!'s third album. Rather than reading the forensic report, however, you'd be better off just wallowing about in the lysergic swamp created by this Boston quartet. Forged from countless reels of live performance tapes, the largely instrumental 'Round-Wound' is 80 minutes of mind-numbing jams stitched together in a seamless manner that would make a rave (or '70s disco) DJ envious. It's a stupefying, warts-and-all performance, the like of which has sent discerning Terrastock festival crowds staggering into the street mumbling to themselves. Like Anthem Of The Sun, the Grateful Dead's second album (also patched together from live shows), this is a conscious attempt by Abunai! to step back from its more measured studio persona. So it's goodbye to those occasional Byrds and Fairport Convention folkie influences and hello to Amon Düül II, Hawkwind, Can, Flying Saucer Attack, Neu! and all like-minded, red-eyed Valkyries riding herd in psychedelic heaven. (Camera Obscura, POB 5069, Burnley VIC 3121, Australia)
--Jud Cost

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