Album Review: Pond - Man It Feels Like Space Again

Pond - Man It Feels Like Space Again

Bold, kitschy, and psychedelic appeal from start to finish.


Pond have always been cosmonauts, and with ‘Man It Feels Like Space Again’, the Tame Impala-affiliated band make their strongest case for extra-terrestrial gallivanting yet. Loud, flamboyant and packed to the nines with gaudy slap-bass and galactic distortion at every cosmic lurch, their sixth album borders on peacocky.

This is a record that deliberately runs close to that line at all times. On the title track, drums pound with faux-somber intent, and ‘Medicine Hat’ arrives in a guise of a tinny, yowling blues song set on the outer rings of Saturn. There’s even a song called ‘Heroic Shart’, for goodness sake - Pond are fully aware that without proper handling, proceedings could become a little… well, flatulent.

Glam-rock jitterbug leads the way on ‘Elvis’ Flaming Star’. It’s perhaps a tongue-in-cheek, space-dusted homage to 60s Western ‘Flaming Star’, a movie in which Elvis Presley both stars, and sings the theme tune. There’s a slap-bass that may as well have arrived stamped with an endorsement from Sly and the Family Stone’s Larry Graham. Don’t forget ‘Sitting Up On Our Crane,’ either; a charming, soaring pastiche which sounds a little bit like a drunk martian performing Otis Redding’s ‘Sitting In A Dock Of The Bay’. Cultural references abound, Pond continually pull off their vision with unhinged finesse.

Pond have taken a different tact for their sixth album, and by and large, huge spiralling guitar solos are replaced with a more nuanced take on gaudy glam rock. They follow through with their gaudy intentions perfectly, and like an outdated sci-fi film filled with dodgy costumes and flaky green-screen, ‘Man It Feels Like Space Again’ manifests itself in bold, kitschy, and psychedelic appeal from start to finish.