GLOK Andy Bell (Ride) –  ” Pattern Recognition “

Posted: October 17, 2021 in MUSIC

Ride’s Andy Bell unleashes his electronic alter-ego on this blissed-out double album debut, When Andy Bell isn’t being a shoegaze legend in Ride, making cool solo albums, and avoiding the Hurricane #1 comeback, he’s making blissed-out electronic dance music as GLOK. Clearly inspired by folks like the late great Andrew Weatherall and collaborator Pye Corner Audio, Bell says ““GLOK is all about the push and pull between electronic and psych in my music.” Following a few singles and EPs, not to mention remixes of tracks by Ride, Ganser, bdrmm and his own solo work,

Bell has just put out the first full-length album as GLOK. “Pattern Recognition” is a loose concept record which imagines “a week of life, from weekend to weekend” with each side of the double album “capturing different mindstates across that transition.”

Pattern Recognition” isn’t purely electronic. There is plenty of guitar and bass on the album, but it seems more influenced by Bell’s years in Oasis and Hurricane #1, laying bluesy psych leads to fly over the album’s trancey beats. Bell drops us in the deep end right out of the gate with “Dirty Hugs,” a 20-minute one-chord blast of strobed sunshine, with ripping leads atop rolling synth bass and a four-on-the-floor beat that peaks, drops, and peaks again like primetime at a rave.

There are a few guests on the rest of the album:“Maintaining the Machine” features poet Sinead O’Brien on whispery vocals and Primal Scream’s Simone Marie Butler on bass, while Shiarra provides vocals for the dark, alluring “That Time of Night.” There are also tracks that veer into post-rock territory (“Kintsugi,” “Day Three”), and GLOK achieves balearic euphoria on “Closer,” the album’s most purely enjoyable six minutes.

Although usually renowned for purveying the finest quality jangle, drone and general guitar-based magic, Bell’s foray into dance music should come as less of a surprise than immediately meets the eye. There are parallels between the genres within the sonically-deep layers, hypnotic sound and trance-like headspaces or as he puts it more succinctly: “GLOK is all about the push and pull between electronic and psych in my music.”

The album ends with another epic, “Invocation,” that feels like a little bit of everything Bell’s done, all in one impressive 15-minute finale. By the end, you’ve probably forgotten about the album’s concept, and that’s ok: Bell mainly wants you to get lost in the groove.

Although not a full-blown concept album, ‘Pattern Recognition’ has a loose thread which takes in a week of life, from weekend to weekend, with each of the vinyl’s four sides capturing different mindstates across that transition. Each side has a distinct feel that’s different to the last but inherently cohesive – much like the changes an individual goes through over 7 days.

All tracks written and produced by Andy Bell except:

That Time of Night (Andy Bell/Shiarra Bell) featuring Shiarra Bell on vocals
Process (Andy Bell/Shamon Cassette) featuring Shamon Cassette on vocals
Maintaining the Machine (Andy Bell/Sinead O’Brien) featuring Sinead O’Brien on vocals and Simone Marie Butler on bass
Entanglement (Andy Bell/C.A.R.) featuring C.A.R. on vocals

Released October 15th, 2021

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