New material from Montreal psychedelic band Elephant Stone always gives my heart a lift. I was captivated when I first saw this band at The Lexington at a psych night back in 2011, and a few nights later at the much-missed Bull & Gate in Kentish Town. Rishi Dhir‘s sitar playing is mesmerising and adds an incredible depth to the band‘s work.

The new track is called La fusée du chagrin (The Rocket of Sorrow) – it’s a taster of their upcoming EP due to be with us on February 18th. The EP is called Le Voyage de M Lonely dans la Lune. It is a concept album that follows the story of M. Lonely who boards a rocket ship to the moon. Unusually for Elephant Stone, this album is in French, connecting with the band‘s Montreal base. The EP sees Rishi working again with Miles Dupire-Gagnon on drums, Robbie MacArthur on guitar and Jason Kent on keyboards and guitar.

Front man Rishi Dhir admits to being a fan of sci fi, and drops a few seconds of NASA audio at the opening seconds of La fusée du chagrin to set the scene and start us on the skyward trajectory. The journey is marked by a shift into a pulsing rhythm, echoing the energy of a rocket‘s thrust as it propels skywards. There‘s still that familiar Elephant Stone rich psychedelic aura that drenches the track and pulls you into its core but this taster from the EP indicates a shift into something more uptempo and energetic.

The album‘s narrative follows on from the haunting concept album release from 2020 called Hollow telling the tale how after man has trashed this planet, a few head off to a recently-discovered planet. The Harmonia is a vessel built specially to take them to their new home but once they arrive it appears mankind has not learnt any lessons and sets about causing destruction all over again. Hollow was reviewed here and was on gourmet gigs Top Albums for 2020.

Special edition splatter vinyl will be available in Canada on Elephants On Parade, the UK/EU on Fuzz Club Records, and the USA on Levitation. Each version is very limited edition and has exclusive splatter colours.

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