Bushpilot: 23

The reputation of the unsung krautrock specimen from the UK which almost faded away into limbo, and we know as Bushpilot, has been rescued through God Unknown Records. The label initially issued the band's 1993 recording, Live from Brotherswater, and then their ridiculously long overdue first album, Already!

Following the March 2020 release of Already! comes 23, Bushpilot's lost masterwork, recorded entirely live and edited 23 years after the original recordings. The album was supposed to come out on Cherry Red and consequently maximize the band's impact, but that never happened, and the world didn't collide with the art of Bushpilot in a timely manner.

23, the record's closing title track, much like with most of the album's form, it feels rather improvisational, but as explained by vocalist, Ross Holloway, that isn't exactly the case: "The songs aren’t jams; we played and replayed the same musical themes until ‘movements’ or organic arrangements presented themselves naturally. I also think there is a lot of ‘heart’ in the music."

23 sounds and feels like one more sketchily handwritten love letter to CAN, this time following a jazzier path to experimental krautrock through noise rock and punk ways, resulting in something that just like its predecessor, appears like a proto-post rock obscurity.

"For me the overall effect is a collage or something like an abstract expressionist painting in sound," Ross Holloway writes. "There aren’t actually too many edits. We tried to keep the number of edits to a minimum. For example the track 23 is edited down from one single 27 minute take, and there are maybe 3 or tops 4 edits to tighten it up and to make it suitable for putting on one side of an album."

Together with the album's release, God Unknown Records unveiled a newly edited video of a live performance of 23 from 1995, which is downright unmissable.

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