The world might be a bit shit at the moment – and that’s maybe an understatement!
But you can’t go past how great Altin Gün is, a Turkish psych-rock band who seem to be flourishing despite everything that’s been going on.
I don’t even really know how I found out about them – I just heard this one song Ordunun Dereleri I think on Soundcloud from their most recent album Yol (2021) – and it hooked me right in!
The reason I liked it at first, was it had this fantastic low sequence of bass notes, which reminded me of the opening bars of Take My Breath Away by Berlin, which I’d heard as a little kid at a roller-skating rink, Giorgio Moroder’s low notes sounding so amazing reverberating around in such a large space.
So, I felt that I wouldn’t necessarily like the rest of the album, having been hooked on the nostalgia of just this one track.
But when I saw that my local record shop had gotten it on vinyl – all the way from Amsterdam to Down under – with that beautiful album artwork, I took it as a sure sign I should treat myself to it.
And listening to it in my dusty garage – I was stunned by how good it was! Each new track seemed different to the one before it.
Yet, there was a definite common thread throughout the album, an underlying good feeling that manifested through wonderful rhythms, and grooves building up through layers of excitement. I could also hear tiny fragments of other music I admired like Herbie Hancock with his super-tight but experimental fusion albums of the 1970s.
I don’t know a lot about Turkish music – but I realize that Altin Gün are tapping into well-known songs in Turkey that were popular through the 60s/70s/80s – as well as a wider feel, of what continental Europe was like during this era, through some of their art, fashion and typography. On a personal note, my parents met while traveling overland by bus from UK to India around this time, along what was known then as ‘the hippy trail’ – and Turkey was one of the countries that they visited and loved.
But despite these links with the past, this album doesn’t sound at all retro to me. Altin Gün are young musicians – and the album was mixed and co-produced by Belgian duo Asa Moto (Oliver Geerts & Gilles Noë) who I’m sure have also brought some fantastic production elements to the overall sound of this album – making it a new experience for 21st century listeners.
You can get the album Yol on Bandcamp – but you can also watch this good recent live concert embedded below that shows not all things about 2021 are bad!