This double CD and double vinyl set comprise 24 songs, none of which are duplicated between formats, with a total running time of just under 4 (Four) hours. Head honcho Keith Jones has always had a deep fascination with krautrock, and here he has approached some artists who have previously released on FdeM, plus others which have not, to come together on an album where all the material is inspired by Tangerine Dream, Ash Ra Tempel, Popol Vuh and the German electronic music scene of the early 70’s. The result is something which is quite spectacular, with all bands concentrating on the dreamier and spacelike area of the genre, extending sounds and making full use of their synthesisers.
Given the album is so long, it has allowed the bands to take musical themes, extend and then return to them, creating an almost hypnotic state. Everyone has stuck closely to the brief, so much so that it is difficult to pick out individual bands or pieces as being necessary of closer examination as they all work together so well as a complete whole. At times it even feels that it is not even different bands, just extensions of different ideas, so closely do they stick to the initial brief. That being said, Jah Budda is one of the few to have more than one song included, and while he opens the complete set with “Direction Berlin” it is to his later number, the 11-minute-long “Wall of Blissando” to which I most often find myself returning as it really is the musical equivalent of the title. Yet another stunning release from FdeM, play it on headphones and fall into a different world.
8/10 Kev Rowland