Hawkwind Light Orchestra – Carnivorous: Album Review

Some artists from the 70’s era of the stature of Hawkwind have every excuse to lie down and fade away during lockdown restrictions. Carnivorous, a follow up to the incredible  All Aboard The Skylark released late 2019,  refuses to kowtow and gives us a cosmic rock classic.

Release Date: 16th October 2020

Label : Cherry Red Records

Format:   CD/ Vinyl

If you have just disembarked fromThe Skylark you had better get your space travel passport back. Dave Brock and his crew have more adventures to share. The quality of Hawkwind’s unique style of rock music is just as fulfilling a sonic experience and is equally satisfying.

The music stems from preparations for a solo album by Dave Brock that began at the end of 2019 and early 2020. Further material was added by other members of the band. The global pandemic prevented participation from all the members hence the ‘Light’  part in the name of a reduced Hawkwind but despite being a couple of members shy, the quality is far from diminished. In fact, have you spotted that the album title is an anagram of coronavirus?

Brock’s quirky songwriting is evident and hooks us in immediately. His android love Dyna-mite “knows how to do it right,” so bop along in your space boots and have some fun. An instrumental sonic sound journey over the Void Of Wasteland with all the effects you can shake a light sabre at, merges into an oscillating, hammering Repel Attract which is pure Hawkwind rock at its best. 

A dreamier atmosphere with acoustic strumming glides us through Attraction. With the well-trodden rhythm method Hawkwind finds a  solution to ending the human race in Human Behaviour (No Sex Allowed). Putting Square Pegs Into Round Holes is another typical Hawkwind electronic journey pertaining poignantly to the moot point that the wrong people in the wrong place at the wrong time are the ones trying to solve major problems in the wrong way. 

A solid guitar solo guides us through a breezy Windy Day before the screaming guitar takes over as the blues meets psychedelia in  Model Farm Blues. A track that again challenges the worth of the human race. 

Distressed voices begin the manic Lockdown (Keep Calm) despite warnings to remain in control. Virus follows, a vibrant musical record of the impact of the virus on our life. Musically they pull out all the stops on this track and it is unmistakably classic Hawkwind. 

The thrumming beat continues on Forgotten Memories which offers a more optimistic future, beating us into sonic submission as it suggests the dreadful memories will be erased. There is a triumphant flavour in the final track Higher Ground, whirling and trumpeting a better future.

A few of David Brock’s  70’s prog, rock and folk contemporaries who have lasted the course are also looking to their roots to produce exceptional pieces of music. They rival contemporary artists in each genre who are also more than adequately keeping the music thriving. All proof that music from different decades can survive together and offer us some optimism for a brighter sonic future.

Into space we go together!

Watch out for our little chat with Dave Brock in the next couple of days…

Listen to It’s All Lies from the 2012 Stellar Variations album by the Hawkwind Light Orchestra here:

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