Nebula, the Entrance Band, Velcro Lewis Group, White Mystery | Bottom Lounge | Rock, Pop, Etc | Chicago Reader

Nebula, the Entrance Band, Velcro Lewis Group, White Mystery Recommended Early Warnings (Music) Soundboard Critics' Picks

When: Thu., Aug. 13, 8 p.m. 2009

Heavy Psych (Tee Pee) is Nebula’s first proper release since 2006’s Apollo and the first without founding drummer Ruben Romano, who’s been with singer-guitarist Eddie Glass since their Fu Manchu days—he’s been replaced by Rob Oswald, formerly of Karma to Burn and Mondo Generator. (At least they’ve stopped playing musical chairs with bassists—Tom Davies has been aboard since ’04.) What difference does it make in the definitive stoner-rock trio’s sound? Not much. The inspiration they obviously don’t care to waste on their album titles gets channeled instead into period-perfect early-70s lazy-pothead comfy-chair boogie and ecstatic explosions of flanged-out guitar designed to turn your skull inside out through your headphones. Glass’s wailing vocals (think Geddy Lee on ludes) add a touch of nervous energy to this bubbly brew, and there are even a few sly jokes—you’ll never convince me that isn’t a winking Isaac Hayes rip-off in “The Dagger” or a Zeppelin parody in the intro to “Dream Submarine.” Heavy Psych isn’t gonna raise any eyebrows, but it’s expertly engineered to hit certain tried-and-true pleasure centers—it’s probably as close as you can get to soaking your brain stem in a hot tub. —Monica Kendrick

A few years ago a bunch of scruffy Los Angelenos, apparently irritated by their city’s image as the Land of the Heavily Tanned Douche, started growing their hair out, writing fuzzy, druggy folk-rock, and generally doing everything they could to remind people of Laurel Canyon’s hippie heyday. Among the more distinguished groups to arise from this collective impulse is the Entrance Band, originally the solo project of guitarist and singer Guy Blakeslee (at which time it was usually just called “Entrance”) but now a steady trio with former Zwan bassist Paz Lenchantin and onetime Chicagoan Derek James on drums. On their new self-titled album for Ecstatic Peace, they leave behind Blakeslee’s old Dylan-by-way-of-Doctor-Strange astral folk in favor of a sound that combines psychedelic voyaging with burly but catchy guitar rock and comes out sounding something like an alternate-universe jam between Buffalo Springfield and the Doors. —Miles Raymer

Price: $15

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