“There’s nothing to be afraid of and nothing to be glad about. I know this from staring at mountains months on end. They never show any expression, they are like empty space. Do you think the emptiness of space will ever crumble away? Mountains will crumble, but the emptiness of space, which is the one universal essence of mind, the vast awakenerhood, empty and awake, will never crumble away because it was never born.”
Mind-shattering double LP of dysphoric space-rock minimalism from two luminaries of the Swedish punk underground.
Second Launch follows Bremen’s self-titled debut of 2013 and comprises 11 controlled improvisations, reinforced with overdubs, that take clear inspiration from the dark side of kraut and progressive rock, early electronic and drone music, whilst also owing something to the fathomlessly bleak interior landscapes conjured by Nico/Cale on The Marble Index and Desertshore.
The complex dialogue between Lanchy Orre’s guitar and Jonas Tiljander’s organ, by turns pensive and combative, bound up with their mastery of reverb and feedback, is the focal point of the record; supplemented with drums and sparingly deployed analogue synthesizer tones to evoke nothing less than the vast emptiness of outer space and the obliteration of all meaning and identity in the face of it.
From the full-throttle motorik and bonehead repetitions of ‘Sweepers’ and ‘Entering Phase Two’ (echoes of Tiljander and Orre’s alma mater, Brainbombs) to the deep astral psychedelia of ‘Static Interferences’, via the mournful Northern European ambience of ‘Walking The Skies’, the rolling thunder of ‘They Were Drifting’ and the poignant, stargazing blues of ‘Hollow Wave’, Second Launch charts impossible gradients in its search for answers to the oldest questions of all.