West coast psychedelia and expansive drone rock sure can test a man’s patience, but no one keeps you waiting like San Francisco space jammers Carlton Melton. Their second album, ‘Country Ways’, starts with a track that’s twenty minutes long, which never looks likely to awake from its ambient coma. And it never does – it just gets a bit distorted towards the end. There’s no blues influence, or groove, or vocals, like you get with Wooden Shjips, say – just trippy, endless noise. And the seven songs that make up this record don’t ever get any more ‘conventional’, which is precisely what, eventually, makes it so addictive… providing you’re a fan of drone. It’s certainly as self-indulgent as the unaccompanied guitar outro of ‘Harrington Fair’ suggests, but there’s little questioning how beautiful some of this hypnotic music is.

By Austin Laike

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