by Walter Price
Back in the day I found connections between Love & Rockets, Psych-rock and Black Sabbath. I have no memory of anyone agreeing with me but in a twist of fate I have discovered the same connections with added alt-southern rock hints and dashes in The UK’s The Lunar Effect.
The outfit’s sprawling EP Strange Lands is a heavy exploration into new rock territories while maintaining and utilizing brilliant ingredients of rock n’ roll history.
The band’s Jon Jefford offered this about Strange Lands, “The album as a concept is really influenced by space, time and other worlds. We were very aware of this throughout the writing and recording sessions. Everything from the artwork and music to some of the lyrics has an extra-terrestrial feel, questioning who we are. It’s no Ziggy or Floyd but for us it definitely flowed, even the title Strange Lands. That was originally from a song that didn’t make the cut, but the name stands. “Waking up in a strange land, we’ve all done it.”
Jefford went further and went Track x Track Strange Lands with The GTC:
It’s about being on a different plain or spectrum to everyone else, not seeing or understanding the things that most people take for granted in everyday life, someone who cannot feel or empathise through no fault of their own. When I started this song it was a straightforward rock song, but then when playing it in rehearsals, Dan (Drummer) came up with an idea for this almost swinging riff groove, which is what you hear in the chorus and what really makes the song.
If ‘Jack’ had amnesia after his fall and was trying to piece together what had happened and who had pushed him. In a broader sense it’s about being stuck in an endless loop, I got the idea whilst reading about dementia. It’s one of the older songs on the record and was originally called Fingers and Thumbs.
This is probably the most organic song on the album as it grew from a simple hook that I wrote at home, which then transformed into a monster of a song when we worked it out in rehearsals. The music is all about space and time and I rewrote the lyrics earlier in the year when my Dad died, so it reflects that. It’s about energy, its ethereal.
I wrote the bones of this song just after my daughter was born last summer. So it wasn’t even in the original album plans, which was meant to be released on our old record label last spring. They messed us around so much we decided to do it on our own. So maybe that’s karma, as its one of my favourite songs now. Anyway it’s just a catchy little song about my daughter and coming to terms with how much she means to me and my wife. Which is pretty incomprehensible until you are looking back at it all.
This is the oldest song. It’s hung in there though and people like it, even if sometimes we are slightly bored of playing it live. Which I think happens with older songs, that you still play lots. Lyrically It’s about working out who and what we are, right at the very core. Are we just cells or something more? That sounds deeper than it is. It’s all about the riff and the heaviness really.
Probably the best song overall for me, the only song I don’t mind my voice on and the first song I have ever written on a piano. So I think everyone was originally concerned when I played it and rightly so, it’s a different direction for us, but It’s got soul. It’s a mix of vague lyrical references which can mean different things to different people, but it’s mainly just a conversation with the person you find in life who is the same as you. The one who can drive you crazy and be your best friend at the same time. Someone you get and who gets you, the person you would go to the moon and back for.
The Lunar Effect
Jim D. Harris