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500mg - Vertical Approach (2004)

500mg is Michael Gibbons, and Michael Gibbons is 500mg all by himself. Except for the first track, which features additional guitar and whatnot by brother John. Vertical Approach focuses on layered guitar work (both acoustic and electric) with all kinds of other additions to the mix (sitar, loops, layers, etc.). As Ed at Eclipse says, “ Michael Gibbons, of monolithic sounds-great-on-any-substance rockers, Bardo Pond, delivers all the fuzzed out good you’d expect on his 1st solo LP. However, Gibbons really is hitting the true loner path here, forged by weirdos like Deuter, Sandy Bull, early Robert Wyatt and even Neil Young’s dusty Dead Man soundtrack. Yes, these are cyclical, even largely stripped-down meditations—call it komische raga folk, maybe? Whatever the case, that staring-into-the-sun / Skip Spence vibe prevails—this is a headswirler with feeling, from an underrated and understated guitar god. Sitar, plaintive acoustic guitar, electronics, sampled snatches of manipulated vocals, and that glorious trademark FUZZ. Is it for late nights or early mornings? That is for you to ruminate on. Artwork also by the talented Mr.Gibbons! ”  Indeed. (threelobed)

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