Andy Bell: The Indica Gallery EP (Sonic Cathedral) - review | Under The Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Friday, September 17th, 2021  

Andy Bell

The Indica Gallery EP

Sonic Cathedral

May 12, 2021 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share


This Andy Bell is best known as the founding guitarist and co-leader of shoegaze legends Ride, not to be confused with the other Andy Bell, the voice behind ’80s alternative dance duo Erasure. This new trippy, synth-based EP comes hot on the heels of Bell’s 2020 debut LP, The View from Halfway Down. The Indica Gallery EP features remixes of songs from that album.

With the production and remixing help of Pye Corner Audio, Bell steps out of the shadows of shoegaze and directly into the kaleidoscopic realm of arpeggiated synth-pop. But while pop elements abound, the six tracks on The Indica Gallery EP are not pop songs, with the shortest one clocking in at over five and a half minutes.

The psychedelic grooves are awash in lush sonic textures and spiraling sound effects that make the perfect backdrop for these playful tunes that are layered with attractive sounds. When the groovy, hypnotic beats, and syrupy synths are mixed in the right proportion the results are impressive and land somewhere between the oscillating electro-pop of Kraftwerk and the surreal dream pop of Washed Out. See “Skywalker” and “Cherry Cola”.

But getting the recipe right is a delicate balance that doesn’t quite carry through the entire collection of tracks as the excitement gets tempered with an occasional slumbering bass line or monotonous melody that doesn’t go anywhere.

Overall though, the winning combination of contemporary electronica, hypnotic grooves, and arpeggiated synth-pop outweighs the few flaws resulting in a positive and pleasurable musical experience. (www.andybell.bandcamp.com)

Author rating: 6.5/10

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Average reader rating: 8/10



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