15 April 2024

PURPLE AVENGERS – Starlight’s Journey Home (2024 Reissue, LP Self-Released) 




Label: Self-Released

Format: LP, Album, Limited Edition, Black Vinyl

Release Date: March 2024

I’m sure that many of you remember the album “Let The Compass Sink” (2021, LP Clostridium Records)  that we reviewed a couple of years ago (check review here) by Purple Avengers, an album that left very good impressions both from the listeners and the critics… Anyway, the Australian Psych-Rock quartet of the Purple Avengers is back with a new release but not a new album! You see, their latest release is a reissue remastered edition of  “Starlight’s Journey Home”, their debut album from back in the year 1991, which was released two times, in 1992 (by the band themselves with a different running order and artwork) and 1995 (by Phantom Records, a remastered and repackaged version), both on CDs. Well, this particular 1995 version became the definitive one and is the one to be reissued after 29 years, but this time in glorious vinyl format! The band that recorded the album consists of Jack Mulroney (Bass), Garth Cooke (Drums), Richard Marshall (Keyboards & Backing Vocals), and Karl Nielsen (Guitar & Vocals). Here’s a little info to get an idea of what is all about taken from the inside folder of the LP album:

“The Genesis of what was to eventually become the Avenger’s critically acclaimed long player Starlight’s Journey can be found in the many hours of dedicated musical hedonism inside a disused Brisbane department store in the early 1990s. Steeped in the all the best elements of retro psychedelic frippery, and topped off with (mostly) just the right amount of instrumental self-indulgence, it was the release which launched the band’s relationship with Sydney independent company Phantom Records.

Starlight’s Journey Home was recorded at Brisbane’s Broken Toys studio in the winter of 1991 with Leroy Bath (who had engineered the Avenger’s first 7″ – ‘When Will The World Stop Spinning? Blues’, the year before). The long instrumental-based tunes like Rikkety Raga and Dragged Up the Mountain of Love which form the core of the album were recorded live late at night in the time-honored Chocolate Watchband method. Strangest Daybring was written during the recording and hints at the heavy sonics so much a part of the live sound that is otherwise hidden on the prog rock wig out.

The finished product was released by the band themselves in October 1992 with a different running order and artwork. Phantom subsequently remastered and repackaged the album in 1995 and it is this version of the record which has become the definitive one.

Three decades on Starlight’s Journey Home remains an exciting and vibrant recording – one of the best psychedelic releases in recent memory. Like any good record, it captures a time and a place special to the listener. Originally released right at the time CDs were sweeping LPs from record stores across the world, this 30th-anniversary release allows people to hold and hear Starlight’s Journey Home as it was always meant to be…on vinyl…”

The album contains 9 songs, 5 on side ‘A’ and the rest 4 on side ‘B’. The feeling that you get and the whole sense of the atmosphere is the one that you used to get from all these significant late 80s neo-psychedelic bands. It kicks off with the self-titled “Starlight’s Journey Home”, 10 seconds of a swirling feast of sounds intro, and then a huge dive into an ocean of Psychedelics, a totally LSD-drenched track, a psychedelic puzzle with trippy bass lines, spaced-out vocals, rhythm changes, killer organ sound, dynamic drumming, and shimmering electric guitars. This is a 60s PSYCH-influenced track, presented with an astonishing late 80s neo-psychedelic complexion, so psychedelically trippy! The much faster “Strangest Daybring” follows, Psych (of course) flavored but with a fantastic late 80s Australian punky attitude, and for once more the bass kicks asses! “Like Knies” is a cooler track, emerging some late-night summer Psych vibes, flirting simultaneously with garage and Indie-Rock, sounding like an early INXS-on-Acid tune, wow! As the title implies, “Purple Blues” is a BLUES track embodied with huge doses of LSD, a psychedelically electrical glowing song that could easily fit 1968’s Electric Mud LP (Muddy Waters)… Psychedelia, Raga Rock, and Prog are finely blending altogether in the 7:47 min “Rikkety Raga”, an epic track, lysergically trippy, causing multiple chemical reactions inside your brain… Side ‘B’ opens with “Leaves”, this is Power Pop with a strong late 80s Neo-Psychedelic feel and a rather groovy Proggy keys section towards its end… On “Stolen By Trees” the band blends Psych, Prog, Power Pop, and Australian Indie Rock adding a remarkable dark punky garage-y attitude, while the keys on this one are literally sounding ready to be… explode! The next one, “One Wild Eye”, is a very “difficult” track, hard to categorize, starts in a poppy-psych way, slowly gets deeper into the other side of Psych, and makes you wonder… is there another side of Psych? … Hmmm… The album comes to an end with the MAGNIFICENT “Dragged Up The Mountain Of Love”, one of the tracks that gave Purple Avengers the reputation as a very trippy group to go and see. A groove-a-delic 9:13 track,  wondrous, neo-romantically flirting, deeply psychedelic flavored, with a mood for improvisation, becoming trippy and proggy at times, an incredible Tour de Force magically blowing synthesis… “Starlight’s Journey Home” was a “must” back in the day, and it belongs to that category of “underground” albums that after so many years, it became a “necessity”! Go grab it, right now! TimeLord Michalis   




A1 Starlights Journey Home 4:51
A2 Strangest Daybring 3:18
A3 Like Knives 4:51
A4 Purple Blues 2:44
A5 Rikkety Raga 7:47
B1 Leaves 6:51
B2 Stolen By Trees 3:55
B3 One Wild Eye 3:27
B4 Dragged Up Mountain Of Love 9:13






Check PURPLE AVENGERS Official Web 

Listen/Buy through PURPLE AVENGERS Bandcamp 








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