Kontiki Suite - On Sunset Lake (2013)
Drifting on a summer breeze out of Laurel Canyon by way of the UK, Kontiki Suite shimmer the evening fire with a blend of warm easy going laidback and slightly lazy psychedelic country songs that will lay waste to any evening. And when the band is at their peak, they’re downright wonderful, though with the stone in the road being that all of their material is not created nearly as blissfully wonderful as “Brighter Than You,” “My Own Little World,” “All I Can Say,” “Free From Sound,” “Pages Of My Mind,” “Moonlight” and “Hollywood” … which have all been drawn from their (to date) albums The Greatest Show On Earth and On Sunset Lake.
This is one of those bands for whom I’ve had to pick and choose the material that rides most comfortably in my back pocket, where from their two releases, I have managed to keep but 30 minutes of intoxicating numbers that for me will stand the test of time. My personal issue with the remaining tracks, and you may not find it so, is that the other material has not been as well considered, constructed and explored, where while guitar chords jangle, the organ is sustained and played in such a high range that I’m left feeling uncomfortable and out of kilter, as if they have something to say, but just can’t get it out properly. I sincerely wanted, and very much attempted to fall in love with their three opuses “Under The Rug,” “Burned” and “Magic Carpet Ride,” though I just couldn’t get passed those manifestations that didn’t play well with my ears.
All of that being said, this is a band ripe for exploration, and who knows, perhaps you’ll fall spellbound with all of their material, or like me, smile with a handful of songs that will delight your wildest expectations.
- Jenell Kesler
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