3RD EAR EXPERIENCE - “Danny Frankel's 3rd Ear Experience”

By Dark Starr

You can always count on 3RD EAR EXPERIENCE for quality space rock styled music. I think this might be their strongest album, though, so that says a lot. Robby Robb is the main man behind this project, but as usual he's assembled a cast of characters who are all talented for this ride. If you dig space rock with a lot of psychedelia in the mix, you will be very pleased with this. It's mostly instrumental, but there are some vocals here and there.

The opening "A Beautiful Question" rises up gradually, with trippy space at its core. There is some serious psychedelia built into the piece. Weighing in at over 18-miniutes long, "What Are Their Names" is a real epic. Psychedelia and space rock merge really well here. This gets really intense and driving at times. There are parts of this that remind me of THE DOORS to some degree. While there are extensive instrumental sections, when the vocals are heard, they really add to the psychedelic rocking vibe, feeling like something that would have been at home in the late 1960s or early 1970s. There is some stellar guitar exploration on the number.

The trippy elements driving the cool spacey freakout that bears the title "Cosmos Glazed Elephant" are so strong. The piece is melodic, psychedelic and very space oriented. Another epic piece, "Weep No More, My Friend" is almost 15-minutes long. It is quite the ride, too. It feels very organic and natural in its progression, but it covers quite a bit of range. It's dramatic and powerful. It has some really rocking moments further down the road, really exploding out into early HAWKWIND-like space rock.

Next up is "Timelessness Speaks pt 1." I really dig how the bass kind of dances around as this trippy piece is getting underway. There is some cool psychedelia merged with space music here. At just under eight-and-a-half minutes, this would be an epic on some sets, but it's one of the shorter pieces here. "Timelessness Speaks pt 2" weighs in at just a little over 12-minutes long. It comes in seeming related to the previous cut (which makes sense, of course), but it seems to have more of a DOORS goes space rock vibe. There are some hints of THE GRATEFUL DEAD in some of the guitar work later.