I stumbled upon Flavor Crystals at a live show and was immediately a fan of their deep, immersive sound, which translates well to record on their fourth full length, The Shiver of the Flavor Crystals. The band uses droning guitar and throbbing bass to create hypnotizing songs that remind me of early Spiritualized with a bit of Stereolab thrown in. Like most psychedelic music, it’s easy to get lost in and the meanings of the songs are hazy, allowing listeners to project meaning onto it as they see fit.
While Shiver is full of more drone-based songs that are captivating in their own right, the real magic happens when the band uses their sound on relatively traditional song structures. One of the best songs is “Diamond Mine,” a cover of a song by David Kilgour & the Heavy Eights that remains faithful to the original while sending it into space. “Antenna House” is a mellow, dreamy song that fades into one of the album’s many longer instrumental jams.
What I really like about this album is how it has such a defined, consistent sound. Flavor Crystals have been making music for awhile now, and this album is the product of a band who knows exactly who they are and what they’re good at.