Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Material - Hallucination Engine

By the mid-'90s, Material was simply another word for Bill Laswell, so as Laswell's fascination with ambient mysticism grew, so did Material's tendencies in that direction. After 1991's dark and reggae-inflected The Third Power, Hallucination Engine's long, spacy jams aren't exactly a dramatic departure, but the combination of Wayne Shorter and various North African elements is certainly interesting. In fact, the array of guest musicians is more diverse than ever: Trilok Gurtu, Jonas Hellborg, Zakir Hussain, Bootsy Collins -- the list goes on and on and even includes William Burroughs (who intones a hilarious list of "Words of Advice" over a churning mid-tempo funk groove). In his ambient mode, Laswell has been accused of turning too little music into too much track length, and there's some justice to those criticisms; here, "Black Light" and the unbelievably well-named "Eternal Drift" both plod along for far too long with far too little development. But that William Burroughs track kicks in just as you're about to fall asleep, and it's followed immediately by a very funky and very jazzy remix of "Cucumber Slumber." "The Hidden Garden/Naima" proposes an interesting juxtaposition of Arabic pop song and modal jazz, with dramatic and beautiful results, while "Shadows of Paradise" brings the album to a close with a gentle whimper, not a bang. - by Rick Anderson, AMG

This is an essential cd for any music fanatic. But, be forewarned: It is not for the meek of mind and soul, however. This is an intense experience. Bill Laswell put together an amazing ensemble of musicians for this album. It reads like a whos who of exotic musics: Nicky Skopelitis, Wayne Shorter, Bernie Worrell, Bootsy Collins, Shankar, Sly Dunbar, Jonas Hellborg, Zakir Hussain, Trilok Girtu--Get the message? This is an all star cast. Each piece takes the listener on a journey into their own mind. It is meditation for the hardcore music fan. This international affair will impress--nay--awe and inspire the true music buff. It even features a spoken word track by the late, great William S Burroughs. Words of Advice is a great track. Burroughs adds the proper dose of literary and comic repose to this dense musical mix. The mixture of jazz, funk, blues, rock, psychedelia and international sounds is enthralling. It is one of the deepest albums I have ever heard. - by George Schaefer,

Artist: Material (Bill Laswell)
Album: Hallucination Engine
Year: 1993
Label: Axiom (1994)
Runtime: 67:21

1.  Black Light (Bill Laswell/Wayne Shorter) 7:35
2.  Mantra (Bill Laswell/L. Shankar/Caroline) 8:46
3.  Ruins (Submutation Dub) (Bill Laswell) 8:58
4.  Eternal Drift (Bill Laswell/Nicky Skopelitis) 7:38
5.  Words of Advice (Bill Laswell/William Burroughs) 4:00
6.  Cucumber Slumber (Fluxus Mix) (Joe Zawinul/Alphonso Johnson) 7:32
7.  The Hidden Garden/Naima (Bill Laswell/Simon Shaheen/Nicky Skopelitis) 13:02
8.  Shadows of Paradise (Bill Laswell/L. Shankar/Nicky Skopelitis) 9:46

Bill Laswell (Bass Guitar, Loops, Beats, Samples)
Wayne Shorter (Soprano and Tenor Saxophone)
William S. Burroughs (Voice)
Simon Shaheen (Violin, Oud)
Liu Sola (Voice)
Nicky Skopelitis (Acoustic and Electric Guitar, Electric Sitar, Baglama)
Bernie Worrell (Electric Piano, Hammond Organ)
Bootsy Collins (Space Bass)
L. Shankar (Violin)
Sly Dunbar (Drum Kit)
Jeff Bova (Synthesizer)
Jihad Racy (Ney)
Jonas Hellborg (Acoustic Bass Guitar, Fretless Electric Bass)
Zakir Hussain (Tabla)
Trilok Gurtu (Tabla)
Vikku Vinayakram (Ghatam)
Fahim Dandan (Voice)
George Basil (Qanoun)
Michael Baklouk (Daff, Tambourine)
Aiyb Dieng (Chatan, Congas, Percussion)


  1. Thanks itr, Hallucination Engine sounds rather interesting. Thanks again for the opportunity.

  2. Thanks a lot! I'm eager to share this experience !

  3. bill laswell has been one intense mofo, didnt even know this existed... as if the Archie Shepp with Whitney Houston material was not historic enough

  4. would love to download, haven't heard in ages, tiny link just ads.



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