Rangda – Formerly Extinct
The second LP from this absurdly talented US psych-rock supergroup – comprising two of the most thrilling guitarists around, in Sir Richard Bishop and Ben Chasny, and the astounding avant-rock drummer Chris Corsano - continues the approach of their 2010 debut False Flag. As on that record, the central problem confronting the trio is a predictable one: how to unite three dominant and distinctive musical personalities within a coherent whole, without creating an indulgent, overworked mess?
Again, the solution is to rein in each member’s instinct for improvisation. Much of the time – see Idol’s Eye, Majnun – Bishop and Chasny consecutively trade blistering riffs, rather than attempting to entwine them. At such points, Corsano’s role is to provide a cohesive underpinning, and his drumming can consequently feel uncharacteristically restrained. It’s on pieces like Plugged Nickel, when his frenetic, restless rhythms come to the fore, that Formerly Extinct gels most impressively.