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Magnetic Seasons

    It may come as no surprise to someone hearing 'Magnetic Seasons' for the first time that purveyors of said album, Mugstar, are on a label run by stalwart post-rockers Mogwai. Though they share a similar philosophy to music, it is by no means derivative.  There is a noticeable ambience around this whole collection, and with it, a certain calmness. Though the sounds themselves are not typically mellow, their delivery carries the pieces along in a haze. This is drone for those who love a bit of movement or melody, or post-rock for those who love improvisations around a theme. This is a competant and assured collection from a band who have much to offer. Robust but nuanced instrumental loveliness. 



      Axis is Mugstar’s long awaited fifth full length album - an expansive collection of songs that take the listener on a journey. The destination is not important it’s all about the journey - travelling through different movements, diverse colours and sounds picking up from where Lime left us in August 2011. From the dark brooding (‘Black Fountain’) to the elevating (‘Tangerina’), the cylindrical (‘Axis Modulator’) and the sonic mantra (‘Upturnsidedown’)

      Axis showcases a more diverse MUGSTAR whilst retaining their unmistakeable sonic wall of sound. Albeit mainly instrumental, theres a real psychedelic groove that emanates from the kraut-rock inspired sounds of this record, it will shake you down in the same way the first time you copped earfuls of Oneida, Neu!, Loop, Wooden Shjips, Bardo Pondo and even a puff of Hawkwind.


      Serra - Distant Sun Remixes

        Remixes were mentioned when Agitated asked to reissue the Mugstar LP "Lime", we asked about, we got some good response! this two Track EP / one track CDEP release features the remix work of Robert Hampson (Loop / Main), he has transformed 'Serra' into some 39 minute planeshifting kosmische epic.

        The first 19 or so minutes (side One on the vinyl) pulse with some fizzing electrical energies that evoke obscurio Kraut rock demo tapes from the mid 70s, the sail by, and then the second part (side Two on the vinyl) the beats, the rhythms they subside into some early (early!) Tangerine Dream-esque ambient but not ambient soundscapes, wholly immersive, wholly essential. Both "sides" combined as the whole "piece" on the CD version.

        The vinyl cut is deep, the pressing is in Germany (natch), and will be on clear green vinyl in a clear plastic bag, limited to 800 copies for sale only.



          Mugstar’s third album (and second on Important Records) maintains the power and heaviness of the sonic assaults laid out in their previous releases while extending musical maneuvers and textures into new territories.

          “Sunburnt Impedance Machine” moves through driving riff passages with soaring guitars and a voice recalling touches of early Floyd before locking into a repetitive keyboard and drum driven outro. “Serra” is an extended voyage through a shimmering Krautrock landscape, with continuous expectant grooves that call to mind a turbo-charged Neu! combined with heavy waves of churning minimalist synth à la Glass or Reich. Clinic’s Jonathan Hartley guests here, adding distant bursts of haunting clarinet skronk to induce flashes of Nik Turner or Beefheart. “Radar King” launches with mesmeric drums and bass while guitars weave and build to near climax before descending to an eerie space - a noise fest Sonic Youth would revel in! And finally, “Beyond The Sun” closes in a more reflective mood, with incessant rhythms punctuated by arpeggiated synths and distant vocals that evoke a feeling of pastoral psychedelia.

          Take the list of band names mentioned above; add a few others along the lines of Bardo Pond, Oneida, Circle, and Kinski; wind the intensity and volume levels up to blistering; and you’ll be entering Mugstar’s universe.

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