Hawkwind Kinetic Playground

Flashback to the mid 1980s...

Mazda GLC moving at a high rate of speed, the tinny speakers in the home made speaker box are rippling with a treble filled, massive sound sending the musical wave forms out the open windows and open sunroof.

The sound is Hawkwind, a space rock band from Britain, that still exists to this day in some form or other.

Their heyday was the early to mid 70s when Lemmy was a crucial figure in the collective, providing his solid bass anchor, wild gruff vocal stylings and general charisma. Above is a picture of The Hawks in action in Chicago (at The Cubby Bear of all places) in 1997.

Coming across this cdr was quite interesting to me as it features Lemmy in the lineup as well as Twink on drums. The sound quality is OK, but it was "recorded by some guy with a tape recorder in the audience" per the tags that came with the sound files. The date of the recording is 6 December 1971.

Part of the whole allure to me of Hawkwind was their general weirdness and the fact that most people, even music geeks hated them back in the day. I am not a fan of scifi per se but I like the spoken word weirdo ramblings that Dave Brock (or whomever) that are performed between songs, add a creepy, lost falling feeling to the music. I always pictured hearing Hawkwind, if I were in space and my line to the ship got severed and I was left to drift into the void.

One of the highlights for me is the intro where they announce that we the technicians of spaceship earth and that they are out of control. The "captain" sounds like he is on something...

You Shouldn't Do That has a nice build, with Twink just rolling on the drums and then pounding out a solid beat to Lemmy's bottom end.

It is followed by The Awakening that is a spoken word weirdo thing into You Know You Are Only Dreaming, which is slow and has a boring, slow, repetitive riff that may have the potential to put you to sleep.

Master of The Universe has the Wind hitting their pocket performance wise, but the tape has distortion and perhaps some dropouts.

On Born to Go, they get downright experimental. The sound is like awkward jazz or something, atonal ramblingness, adorned with feedback.

All in all a great flash back, even thought it is a bootleg and has some sonic deficiencies.


COOP said...

Hawkwind rules! Space Ritual is the ultimate stupid 70's stoner rock album, with that crazy unfolding record cover.

Sf author Michael Moorcock wrote all that crazy spoken word stuff for Hawkwind, and was in his own space/prog rock band called Deep Fix!

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