Various Artists - Terror From The Universe [Righteous - 2020]Terror In From the Universe is the next in the series of CD compilations culled from the basement grates of Lux Interior & Poison Ivy of rockabilly/ garage punk/ Gothabilly band The Cramps. And as it’s title suggests the focus this time is all things space-related and extraterrestrial- with sonic contents moving from 50’s space-bound easy listening, tripped-out & intergalactic jazz, tacky star fleck Rock & roll, bizarre-yet-mellow spoken word fare, & more experimental based electro lined orchestral music- with the whole comp dotted with cheesy Sci-fi film samples.
As with the other five or six releases in the series, the comp once again appears on Righteous Records- which is part of the Cherry Red family. The single CD is presented in a clear jewel case- taking in a bright & colorful eight-page inlay booklet-this features a three-page write-up about the comp by Dave Henderson Mojo Magazine, as well as course cover artwork & vinyl labels from some of the selected tracks.
Unlike the other comps in this series, this release is broken up into four long song/ sample suites- each of these run for between seventeen & twenty minutes, making up for a total a total runtime of seventy-three-minute. And as you can imagine this choice has it’s pros & cons- making it eventful & rewarding shifting sonic journey for those want to just play the comp in one go, though rather frustrating if you want to home in on certain tracks.
So with part one, we start out with an emergency services sample from a 1950's Sci-fi/ disaster film, then we shift into the theremin & warbling chorus tipped R ‘n’ R of The Invaders "Full Moon". From here we shift to the mellow vibe plying meets cool talk spoken word wonderings of Eden Ahbez’s "Full Moon". As we move through this first suite we go from grand piano, smooth rising vocals & flighty electro edged easy listening of Thomas Disseevelt’s “Ignition”, onto the clip-clopping & wonky space-bound jazz of Sun Ra & His Arkestra’s “Looking Forward”.
The remaining three suites follow similar mix & match journey between more upbeat guitar-based R ’n’ R, tacky 50’s-60’s novelty pop focused on space themes, celestial easy listening, intergalactic jazz(in all there are four Sun Ra tracks placed throughout the comp), quirky spoken word & film sound samples, and spacey early electronics meet orchestral fare.
On the whole I’d say Terror In From the Universe is up to standard in type & quality of tracks to the other comps in the other Lux & Ivys compilations. It’s just a little bit frustrating with the suite layout if you're trying to lock in on a certain track, though I can app why the release was sequenced this way due to the blend of songs & film samples.Roger Batty