Neon Pibroch is a brand new full length cd from the Astral Social Club. Also available at the same time is a limited edition Astral Social Club LP on Important titled Super Grease. Neon Pibroch is dedicated to the memory of Textile Records founder Benoit Sonnette. Astral Social Club is the current project of Neil Campbell, formerly of Vibracathedral Orchestra, Sunroof!, A Band and many more. Campbell has been active since the early 80s, and The Wire magazine has said that, along with his friends Richard Youngs and Matthew Bower, he "provided the map co-ordinates for much of what passed for a post-punk UK underground during most of the 80s and 90s".
Campbell's approach as Astral Social Club could be seen as both a continuation and a refutal of his work with Vibracathedral Orchestra - a continuation in that it continues the quest into the unknown stellar regions of improvised drone-based music, and a refutal in its espousal of most of the elemental organic rock modes that made that band so special. The focus here is more on alien electronics and overloaded loop disorientation, sometimes even working with sounds more readily associated with the far end of dance music to produce a truly vast 21st century psychedelic sound.
Late last year, VHF Records released a compilation/mix CD drawn from the earlier string of self-released CDRs which showcased the diverse methods employed in Astral Social Club recordings. These encompass straight-ahead drumbox/synthesizer jamming, computer-processing, swirling loops, primitive vocal holler, noise catharsis, tranquil guitar shimmer and a busload of other angles. The live experience throws these methods up the air, cranks up the volume and adds a visceral, seething human presence before letting it fall all over the audience. Despite the excessive use of electronics and processing, the over-riding feeling is one of a raw, ecstatic communion with the music, a million miles from sterile "electronica". Although largely a solo project, Astral Social Club collaborators have included Tirath Singh Nirmala, Richard Youngs and Arttu Partinen.