Astral Social Club Octuplex

Vibracathedral Orchestra's Neil Campbell continues down the robot-strewn road less travelled with this new eight-tracker. Octuplex is part perpetual motion machine and part redefinition of '70s and '80s German motorik propulsion. In this case, the motorik thrust seems provided by a sewing machine and faulty Nintendo games. The trio of tracks that open the album bleed into each other like a damp hallucination of squelching mushrooms and knitted yarn rainbows, eventually exhausting their high at the end of "Aggro Vault." "Pilgrim Sunburst," which follows, sounds like a slow-moving cyclone has plucked up a merry-go-round and flung it into a calliope. "Sweet Spraint" and "Radial Hermaphrodite" are reminders of Campbell's more ambient work, with their unbroken axle of loops and globules of acoustic guitar surviving the buffeting noise. It's a maximal use of sound over a minimal amount of time, and it's the closest to actual space travel I've come so far this week. (VHF)