Essentially the brainchild of multi-instrumentalists Robert Rich and Rick Davies, Amoeba offer up a pristine variety of psychedelic rock on their fourth album, Pivot, one that delves into pure tones and atmospheres rather at odds with such a genre tag. Most of Pivot‘s songs stay well within the four- and five-minute range, never spiraling away into the ether because of acid-drenched freakouts or wank-imbibed workouts, remaining concise, compact, and coherent without making the often-verse/chorus song structures obvious or belabored. Instead, acoustic guitars and harmonium take center stage, as do Rich’s smooth-as-silk vocals, all of it crafting bountiful, caressing waves of ethereality, sometimes detouring in a jazz fusion-like way, either way being a lulling soundscape perfect for gray autumn days in the North, much like the album’s cover evokes. Gentle, but still there.
Relapse, P.O. Box 2069, Upper Derby, PA 19082; http://www.relapse.com