Mind Brains at Flagpole

Mind Brains’ self-titled debut pushes the psychedelic sounds of Elephant 6 deeper and higher into the outer limits. As the CD’s opening number, “Happy Stomp,” unravels its long, drawn-out rhythms, Kraftwerk’s “Europe Endless” and Faust’s “It’s a Rainy Day (Sunshine Girl)” are musical touchstones.

These Krautrock staples light the path that Mind Brains—a group whose resume boasts of its members’ stints with the Olivia Tremor Control, of Montreal, the New Sound of Numbers and more—follows. But as “Body Horror” picks up the pace with its winding synth rhythms, angelic choruses and electronic drum patterns that fall like happy heartbeats, the group dives headlong into its own pool of cosmic dark matter.

Creating a moment in the rhythm is Mind Brains’ true strength, as “Whistle Tips,” “The Era of Late Heavy Bombardment” and “Sea Shore Minor” plow through sonic and psychological terrain that’s ecstatic and uneasy, but bound by an organic process.

This is the group’s first album, but it’s not the first trip these guys and gals have taken together. The scope of rich ideas finds balance in the most unlikely places because these five musicians know each others’ strengths, weaknesses and where Mind Brain’s thoughts are heading next—without even thinking about it.

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