Psi Corps – All Roads Lead To Amber   1 comment

Psi Corps is a side project of Alisa Coral from Space Mirrors. Alisa is a accomplished musician and a music visionary. The Alisa Coral story began somewhere in the late 90s in Moscow when she played bass and keyboards in a variety of local heavy-metal bands. That music appeared to stifle Alisa, and she pursued a solo career in 2001. Few recordings were produced at her newly equipped home-studio. It was a surprising departure from metal intensity and from guitar-oriented music in general. Instead, she worked primary with synthesizers, creating cold, sorrowful and sometimes sinister ambiance not so far from Gothic-industrial and post-industrial exercises. In August 2002, SPACE MIRRORS  were born, an “Infernal Apocalyptic Space Rock” duo of Alisa Coral and Australian guitarist Michael Blackman (ALIEN DREAM) which put out a string of remarkably intense albums with internationally acclaimed guest-performers: multi-instrumentalist Arjen Lucassen (AYREON, STAR ONE), bassist Martin Litmus (LITMUS), vocalists Metatron (THE MEADS OF ASPHODEL) and Martyr Lucifer (HORTUS ANIMAE), saxophonist Nik Turner (of HAWKWIND and SPACE RITUAL fame) among others. Launched in 2008, Alisa Coral’s newest project PSI CORPS lies somewhere in between various aesthetics: dark rock, kraut rock, progressive rock, experimental and cinematic ambient. (source: Russian Association Of Independent Genres – Psi Corps).

Psi Corps is a project that records albums based on themes from books, the previous album “Tekeli-li” was based on a work from Edgar Allan Poe and with this new album titled “All Roads Lead To Amber” the author of choice is the fantasy writer Roger Zelazny. Alisa Coral (bass, effects, theremin, synthesizers and drums), has teamed up with Charles Van de Kree (electric and acoustic guitars, guitar synths, and de-tuned glockenspiel), of Jet Jaguar but also Arkady Fedotov of Vespero who adds some bass work. The album is split into two parts but its basically nine well crafted pieces that blend ambient atmospheric sections with heavy guitar parts and space-rock inspired synthesizers. Being more or less an concept album, the recording  flows like its one long piece lasting more than a hour but don’t be put off by the “concept” tag. Its not a self-indulgent type of album but rather a collection of great songs that blend and flow together into a flawless soundtrack that matches the visions of writer Roger Zelazny. The medi-evil fantasy themes are recreated here musically with dark, brooding themes mixed with psychedelic hypnotic sections. The music is very cinematic with sounds resembling what you would read in the fantasy inspired writings.

What is also very effective is the mixture of loud and quiet parts which is perfect for both headphones or a surround-sound system, quiet parts that are both strange and unique blend well with loud sections that are dark and menacing. If you have ever heard Alisa’s other band Space Mirrors you would know she has a natural talent for creating Space Rock sounds made famous by Hawkwind, Tangerine Dream and Ozric Tentacles and Psi Corps really isn’t that much different apart from the concept album angle. Along with Alisa’s incredible musical talent, Charles Van de Kree is also a stunning musician, some of his guitar work here is breath-taking and is an impeccable match for Alisa’a musical visions. The use of guitar effects and spacey sounds gives everything a very spacious atmosphere and you even get the use of the theremin! The album is not too complex but its no easy-listening experience either, the constantly shifting sound-scapes and mood changes make this an challenging album to listen to but along the way there is also some powerful emotional moments that keep your attention level up to a premium. Zelazny is known for his dark and brooding tales and on that level this album compliments it very well. This is a album for ambient music fans as well as prog-rock fans but its the lovers of Space Rock that will mostly appreciate whats on offer on “All Roads Lead To Amber”. 8.5/10

Psi Corps @ Myspace
Raig Records

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Posted September 23, 2010 by doommantia in Psi Corps, Space Mirrors

One response to “Psi Corps – All Roads Lead To Amber

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  1. New arrivals at Phonosphera Records:
    http://www.phonosphera.com/index.html
    http://www.phonosphera.com/distro.html

    Psi Corps – uSSSy – The Grand Astoria – I am Above on the Left

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