Fireworking at St. Croix by GazpachoRelease date: March 11, 2022
Two years ago, Gazpacho released their 11th studio album Fireworker on the Kscope label. Here on Echoes and Dust, I championed the album by considering it to be a spectacular journey. On March 18th of that year, they were planning to do a European tour with Pure Reason Revolution when they released their first studio album in nearly ten years entitled, Eupnea.
Just as it was announced, the Covid-19 pandemic hit. And everything came to a screeching halt. No tours, concerts, festivals, you name it. It must have been a big blow for both bands to know that the world was going to be different. And the cabin fever momentum was about to start during the lockdown.
For Gazpacho, they decided to perform the entire album from their rehearsal space near Oslo. St. Croix is the band’s pre-production tour for the streaming event, captured on October 25th. Not only have they played the album, but one epic and one classic from When Earth Let’s Go and Tick Tock.
Whether you watched or listened to their rehearsal space, you feel as if you’re invited to their private gigs during these tricky times. And the event at the time, was a chance to relax and get away from all of the crazy-ass shit that was happening on the news, and from the outside world.
From the surreal dream-like landscape of ‘Space Cowboy’ with its clock-ticking monk chant turned booming militant drum section, to the poetic gurus of Ohme bringing in the ‘Fireworker’ with Torp and Johansen playing in this loop-like section, Vibo and Krømer have set up this volcanic midsection before gentle rain drops set through the rehearsal space.
The chemistry between the sextets are spot-on. There’s a lot of signals on where they come in, and where they come out. This is where Gazpacho have transformed themselves into a band of brothers at the time they were doing this two years ago. Not only that, but to be free from the lockdown, and seeing the sunlight once and for all.
Then, all of a sudden, they walk into the styles of Talk Talk’s The Colour of Spring, honouring the late, great Mark Hollis with a symphonic string section done by Andersen on ‘Antique’ while the echoing effects of a mournful mellotron, sets up the scenario of standing together for the reveal of the ‘Hourglass’.
The closing tracks; the two parter combination between Barclay James Harvest and Peter Gabriel of ‘The Walk’ and the journey of climbing towards the mountain top on ‘Winter is Never’, Gazpacho comes back home to bring the streaming event to an end. And they proved themselves that the mission has been completed for the next story that awaits them.