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Ananda Mida – Karnak Award winner

Ananda Mida
by Mark Machlay at 15 July 2021, 7:15 AM

Two years after their sophomore album, Italian stoner rock and psychedelia collective ANANDA MIDA is back with “Karnak”, an Ep containing three tracks recorded live in the Summer of 2018 and 2019. Led by Max Ear – drummer of OJM and co-founder of Go Down Reocords – and Mattero Pablo Scolaro – an underground guitarist and curator of Go Down Bands On Tour – the band has been playing since 2015 with various lineups from three up to six members. Their first release was the double A side 7” “Aktavas / Passavas” which started the personal mythology of the band. Their debut full-length “Anodnatius” was released in autumn of 2016 through both Go Down Records and Vincebus Eruptum Recordings and features the voices of Oscar de Bertoldi and Filippo Leonardi. The mission for the recording was to remind us of “all the positive forces and slight vibrations…inside and outside of everything and everyone”. Contrarily, the second record, “Cathodnatius” – released in 2019 – the band focused on all the negative forces and obscure vibrations in which we not live and features Conny Ochs on vocals. The band has been fortunate to tour across Italy and parts of Europe.

With their new EP “Karnak”, ANANDA MIDA is a nice little treat to tide fans with three rare and live tracks from years past as they wait for new material to be created by the collective. The opening track is an unreleased instrumental version “Anulios” – a song originally released on their debut LP “Anodnatius”. That is followed with an instrumental jam in which Pablo bowed out allowing guitarist Mario Lalli of YAWNING MAN and FATSO JETSON to step in with his own signature six-string playing. The final track is “The Pilot” – the opening track from “Cathodnatius” – featuring the vocalist from that album Conny Ochs on vocals. The EP serves to spotlight the unfettered and spiced up attitude of improvisations, of the strong idea of a collective in space is given to free collaborations or changes to an original work for a live performance. The graphics on the EP’s cover by eeviac are a nod toward the choral composition that will see the light of day on their third full-length album “Reconciler” which will complete the trilogy of albums with which they began.

The EP “Karnak” acts as a nice little appetizer for what ANANDA MIDA are cooking up with completion of their trilogy of albums. Looking at the track times, it’s a bit like a poem. Ignoring the seconds, the minuets of the three tracks are 6-8-6, very similar in structure of the syllables of a haiku – 5-7-5. Opener “Anulios” conjures up the psychedelic hey-day of the late-60’s and PINK FLOYD’s early explorative work such as “A Saucerful of Secrets”, beginning with trepidation with long reverb-soaked guitar swells. At some point, a proper tempo kicks in and the 70’s hard rock kicks sounding more CREAM-y with plenty of huge guitar riffs and subtle but fitting bass and drum work that are just sublime. Middle track “Jam with Mario” is a groovy, blues-tinged jam as guitarist Matteo Pablo Scolaro stepped aside to allow Mario Lalli to shine, as Max Ear guides the group through several different styles while keeping the band grounded despite the propensity for the group to float away into a tie-dyed sky. Finally, the pilot sees major hard rock influences, especially because of Conny Ochs’ Geddy Lee-sounding vocals, focus more on structure and much more riff-driven nature of the tune. It’s a very special EP and a perfect distraction from ANADA MIDA before they start focusing on new material that should, thankfully, be released soon.

Songwriting: 10
Musicianship: 10
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Anulios (Instrumental)
2. Jam With Mario (feat. Mario Lalli)
3. The Pilot (Live)
Davide Bressan – Bass
Max Ear – Drums
Conny Ochs – Vocals on Track 3
Alessandro Tedesco – Guitars
Matteo Pablo Scolaro – Guitars on Tracks 1 and 3
Mario Lalli – Guitars on Track 2
Record Label: Go Down Records


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