Lay Llamas


The world of Lay Llamas is a radiant black cavern — onyx and volcanic rock, mystery and mysticism entwined in a space haunted by history. Atop a polyrhythmic pulse, the band makes alchemical use of jazz, psych, and cosmic folk, the traditions entwined in their musical melange dissolve as though pulled apart from their roots and reconstituted into the shamanic rituals. The past records pulsed with a ritual spirit, but there’s a more desperate specter at work on Goud. While the opener sprints through the grass like the days of old, by the time we’ve descended to “Circular Time,” the pair are scraping at some resin-baked vision of Lay Llamas. Keys and kalimba parry for speaker space, synths bloom and wither in electric heat shudders. The walls of that radiant cavern begin to sweat oil and ink.

On Thuban, the band created works that wove together, but could be parsed and parceled. They followed it with a more chaotic, limited release last year. The noise-burst sound collage of Sunburned Dreamlike Safari moved the band toward more conceptual pieces and the larger arc that was established there seems to seep into the fibers of Goud. The record is a journey through tunnels and trade routes, a nocturnal maze that constantly folds back in on itself. With a move to Italy’s Black Sweat records, they embrace their untethering from pop and the darkness and disorientation feel good on ‘em.

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