“Todd Tobias and Steve Five, who collaborated on Robert Pollard’s Circus Devils side project (Tobias with music and Five creating videos of the surreal songscapes, including the indie full-length feature film I Razor) use many of the same kind of ideas here: detuned guitars, spooky/creepy/ethereal vocals, instrumental textures and unconventional song structures, often mere fragments, like dreams that disappear before you can fully grasp their significance. Brother Earth is a decidedly more singularly psychedelic outfit than Circus Devils, which seemed to shift shape from one album to the next. Hypnotic reverie “Out Like a Lion” might’ve come from some ’60s hippie cult, but “Sunny Side of the Street” recalls early Bowie. A daft sense of humor is evidenced in the song “Cortez the Cuddler,” like an outtake from Brian Eno’s Here Come the Warm Jets. But then “When I Have Fears That I May Cease To Be” reminds us that it’s not all fun and games at this three-ring mindbender— at times these songs welcome us to the circus of the inner psyche. –Stakerized!”
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