REVIEW: Psyche-Skronk Californian band Anywhere are back with a sequel

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On Record Store Day, Anywhere ll suddenly hit the shops, the blown-out sequel to the psyche-skronk collaboration Christian Eric Beaulieu (Triclops!) and Cedric Bixler Zavala (The Mars Volta) founded as a collective back in 2012. Besides other projects and smaller releases, the two hadn’t come together to craft another guitar-frenzied carnival at full-length. Anywhere ll brings on board Nirvana’s Krist Novoselic, Mike Watt, The Melvin’s Dale Crover, Dot Hacker’s Jonathan Hischke, and players from Comets On Fire, Earthless, Sleepy Sun, Liquid Indian, Devendra Banhart, Lieutenant, Golden, Black Fork, Victims Family, FIREHOSE, and yes somehow a winner of America’s Next Top Model.

A hybrid of acid-punk energy, oozed through open tuning and torqued Eastern ragas, Anywhere ll quickly becomes a truly mushrooming experiment of guerrilla-graduate art school mayhem, and the odyssey of this second full-length is a major hallucinatory thesis. Opening with the sultry opiate den palette of “Bone Flute Blues,” it soon explodes into a full-depths Ayahuasca anti-spell, turning reality inside out through the musical carnival-orgy’s extrapolations “Moon Burnt Mountain” and “Astrophysical Graffiti.” The list of musicians only hints at the Guernica-level canvas filled out with sounds transcending genre, let alone good and evil.

Beaulieu and Zavala’s own musical vocabulary can still be heard throughout — the former still infusing traces of his delight in visionaries like Jack Rose and Sandy Bull; the latter honing his post-hardcore skills to define the dynamics of their co-creators. Don’t be misled: This isn’t jam band music, more-so the kind of screwed-out songs that would have developed if the psychedelic era of the late 60s hadn’t mellowed its hypnotic excesses into the fluid professionalism of Yacht Rock. Imagine the big beat Zeitgeist of the 70s untouched by oncoming cocaine and commercial FM elegance, and Anywhere ll brings you back to the time when anything was possible between young people charming each other with every successive, transgressive note upon a splurge of mad beats.

Admittedly, a purchase of Anywhere ll may seem like an embarrassment of psychoactive riches for those who need things to be more settling. But if you want to hear what’s happening at the party where everyone’s equally stoked for adventures in sound transformation, pick up and file this between your Aoxomoxoa and Hairway to Steven.