Welcome to the world of Ufomammut on this the occasion of their 8th full length album. Following on from Ecate in 2015 these 8 tracks see the Italian trio soundtracking the collision of space craft and giant ancient beasts as only they can.  The albums tracks segue into each other to create one complete piece. Thus the 8 becomes the leniscate – the posh word for the infinity symbol. Normally I would recoil from that symbol as it is the de rigeur tattoo of those with little thought. (Prejudiced bastard that I am). Here though its use trips above the hip and signifies the infinity of the album, the band and their message. The album is not called “eight” . It is to be pronounced in the language of the listener and Poia, Urlo and Vita welcome every listener in for 48 minutes of cosmic doom.

OK I have set the scene. By now you know whether you are in or out. If you have listened to Ufomammut before or been lucky enough to see them live you have an idea of the kinda trip that awaits as you drop the needle or press play. The trio use wide aural brushes to paint the sky with gargantuan riffs and then flick intricate droplets of percussion and synths to accent and highlight the canvas. Then the whole things is set to spin in a maelstrom of distortion. Control is never lost. Every beat is timed to perfection. Each repetition, whether it be a riff, a synth part or drum part echoes or shadows for just the right amount of time before it morphs into the next piece.

I refuse to analyse single tracks as this is a feast to be served at once not picked at course by course, a true journey that will entertain and inspire prog fiends as well as those of us that like things slow and heavy.  The vocals of Urlo vary as much as the music, from hypnotic chants to other worldly alien babble the in flight commentary is top notch. Ufomammut have once again created an album which lures you in before jettisoning you into orbit.  Yes there is variation but the flavours mix and layer to create an enthralling gumbo rather than a chaotic hotchpotch. This is an album to get lost in. Properly lost. Tear up the map. Disconnect the sat nav and google maps and just wade into the cosmic wilderness. Your head will show you the way and your feet will follow.

When reviewing Ecate I called it a holiday for the senses. 8 is the same except this time the plane has overshot and is even further from the earth’s atmosphere.  If Elon Musk is looking for in flight music he should look no further.

(8.5/10 Matt Mason)