During the chaos of 2020 Ashtray Navigations let out a fairly extensive overview. Nearly 6 hours of cosmic sounds, plus 4 max-length CDs curated by AshNav connoisseurs Rob Hayler, Henry Rollins, Pete Coward, and Neil Campbell. It was a nice catch-up and celebration of the band’s crusted psychedelic universe. Fittingly, alongside Rollins, Matt Valentine wrote many of the liner notes. Mirroring his own encapsulated soundscape that’s divined the spirit of the Northeast all these years, AshNav have setup a similarly abundant tap into the heady vibrations around their native Leeds. Phil Todd & Melanie O’Dubhshlaine scrape off a layer of Lyme this time around, lick the knife, and go full in for the freak-focused psych rock rather than noise bursts. The first single from The Apotheosis of VaVaVoom is a motorik, pulsating bit of German Progressive pining, coated in creosote guitar plumes and threaded loosely with Valerio Cosi’s sax work. It’s just the tip of what the band has worked out for the new set, which is due November 25th from VHF.
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