Super rare Bardo Pond recordings from 2002 and pressed on vinyl for the very first time. The third in the band’s series of limited-edition releases showcasing jam sessions and other miscellany. Like Fugazi on acid, a rage for the Velvets, a mantra with real purity of tone.
Somewhere between the ‘Dilate’ album in 2001 (“a combination of Kyuss and Spacemen 3” NME) and ‘On the Ellipse’ in 2003 (“Nowhere is feedback more melancholic, more emotive, than that fashioned by Bardo Pond” Brainwashed), Bardo Pond transcended into a mantra-like, multi-layered, cross-dimensional, wah wah powered nirvana.
Bardo Pond: Volume 3
In some circles, they say, spaceships wafted them away and they only returned some-time later, mind-altered and bedraggled, ears ringing. But that is the stuff of supposition. As we already know, there is no ‘off’ switch on Bardo Pond, they are never knowingly unplugged. Indeed, the modal evolution of their sound continues unabated.
Bardo Pond are a long-running psychedelic rock band from Philadelphia. During the ’90s, they were the flagship act of Philly’s “Psychedelphia” space rock movement, which also included the likes of Aspera, Asteroid No. 4, the Azusa Plane, and tangentially the Lilys. Explicitly drug-inspired — their titles were full of obscure references to psychedelics — they favored lengthy, deliberate sound explorations filled with all the hallmarks of modern-day space rock: droning guitars, thick distortion, feedback, reverb, and washes of white noise. Hints of blues structure often cropped up, but Bardo Pond’s earliest roots lay with avant-garde noisemakers from the realm of free jazz and from New York’s no wave movement and downtown Knitting Factory scene. As their musicianship improved, the band gradually incorporated more traditional influences, but maintained their affinity for the outer fringes of music. Thus, their brand of space rock echoed not just genre staples like Hawkwind and Pink Floyd, but jam-happy Krautrockers (Amon Düül, Popol Vuh, Ash Ra Tempel, Guru Guru) and experimental indie heroes (Sonic Youth, My Bloody Valentine, and especially Spacemen 3). With a steady stream of releases on Matador, including Lapsed (1997) and Dilate (2001), the band stuck around long enough to draw comparisons to the spacier, noisier contingent of post-rockers, like Mogwai and Flying Saucer Attack. Since 2000, they’ve released a numerically titled series of improvisation sessions in addition to their proper studio albums. Subsequent releases have arrived on labels such as ATP (including 2003’s On the Ellipse) and Fire Records (such as 2013’s Peace on Venus and 2017’s Under the Pines), in addition to reissues of rare early recordings like 1993’s No Hashish, No Change Money, No Saki Saki. AllMusic
1. Sifaka (3:41)
2. Ecstasy Dub (8:59)
3. Lomand (15:59)
4. Tanked (4:53)
5. Trimurti (6:28)
6. Blue Turban (14:43)