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Toba Trance

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Critics' Reviews

amg review
On their fourth album proper -- there has been a double-CD retrospective of their first two outings compiled as Bee Jesus -- Argentina's Los Natas pull out all of the stops and recreate stoner rock in their own wasted totemic vision. There are three tracks on Toba Trance, performed by Sergio Chotsourian, bassist Miguel Fernandez, and drummer Walter Broide. The tracks on Toba Trance range from 21:22 ("La Tierra Delfin"), to 14: 21 ("Que Rico"), to 16:19 ("Die Possime"), all of which explore the outer reaches of space rock as it intersects with Indian raga, various indigenous folk musics, and of course the blown-out margins of acid rock as preached first by Kyuss, but mutated and strained through the band's Argentine prism as a method of power and transformation. This is rock music, to be sure, but it is not only rock music. It is open-toned improvisation where drones, arpeggios, tribal rhythm, and plodding, thudding bass become mantric resources for the joint exploration of inner and outer space. This is poetic music in that it is singular while listening to itself in the process of creation, and it is visceral, physical music because it is meant to be played loud. It is unsettling yet hauntingly beautiful. It embodies contradictions, paradoxes, and humongous riffs that change shape and cadence until they become the face of pure rock improvisation. Singling out the three tracks is more than ridiculous, because Toba Trance was conceived of -- and is executed as -- a whole album. While many bands are trying on the stoner rock mantle for size, Los Natas hasn't time to wear a label, they are too busy making something entirely new and original; who else can say that in 2004? -~ Thom Jurek, Rovi
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