Tall Things Falling



  Cover Pic  

  1. Sycamore Rash - 7.21
  2. To Dream Of Acorns - 5.03
  3. Kindling - 4.03
  4. The Horse Behind The Flower - 3.51
  5. Mismatter And Match - 4.50
  6. My Owl - 4.28
  7. Apparatus On My Mind - 3.27
  8. Glove Soup - 10.18
  9. Prime Plant Locks - 4.14
  10. Photos Of Toast - 5.21
  11. Black Lime Tree - 7.45
  12. Meddling Hour - 3.38
  13. Spring Without Green - 3.53

  Thirteen more post-tonal melodies from Ectogram

  The press said:

Tall Things Falling

ANKST CD100 / 68.12 MINS

Third album from haunted Welsh psychedelic alt-rockers.

The earlier Ectogram album, All Behind The Witchtower, was a little like Sonic Youth re-recording the soundtrack to The Wicker Man. Here this trio take things further, with what surely amounts to an alt-rock take on Harken To The Witches Rune, the pagan album once recorded by BBC children's TV presenter Toni Arthur. The song titles Sycamore Rash and Black Lime Tree suggest eerie pastoral events and a distinctive contemporary psychedelia. To Dream Of Acorns summons both New Order in tranced-out live mode and the high gothic of say, Coleridge. Kindling has Ann Matthews' appealing, wispy vocals rolling over lovely guitar curlicues. The hills are alive. But, this time, not with Julie Andrews.

Roy Wilkinson
Q  May 2002

Tall Things Falling


Ectogram's third album doesn't quite have the trio returning to the garage per se after the rich blend of instruments familiar on earlier releases - the same spirit of psychedelic queasiness, Krautrock groove and off-kilter non-pop hooks dominates all. Alan Holmes, in particular, seems to whip up more noise on his guitar than most construction sites could manage, but he's able to touch on everything from swirling, liquid tones to scrabbling, howling rampages. Ann Matthews is the key to it all, though, her sweetly mysterious singing slipping through Maeyc Hewitt's shifting motorik rhythms and her own guitar noise. Whether it's the righteous surge of "Apparatus On My Mind", which captures something Stereolab seem too timid to fully try anymore, or the cascading flow of "Sycamore Rash" - not to mention the 10-minute chug of "Clove Soup" - Ectogram come up trumps throughout this instantly enjoyable listen.

Ned Raggett
Careless Talk Costs Lives   April 2002

Tall Things Falling

Ankstmusik 2002

This is the third release by this Welsh outfit and is an interesting mixture of psychedelic rock music, from the at times quite hard to the very laid back, but always centered around some odd guitar sounds and effects. The bio says that most of the basic tracks are laid down live as improvisations between the three members and then the extras added. The female vocals are mostly of the dreamy nature. Sonic Youth probably gets mentioned in nearly every review of this group but I only really see the comparison in the way the band uses the odd sounds adding to the psychedelic rock format. This band is more psychdelic and less noise. Clearly this group likes to just get together and make some pretty noisy spaced out stuff and this is just fine with me. There are a few more straight songs like "The Horse Behind The Flower" and "Apparatus On My Mind", but don't get me wrong, these are still not at all ordinary. A very cool psychedelic rock experience.

Aural Innovations #20  July 2002

Tall Things Falling


Once you have played with notably unhinged Krautrock heroes Faust and entitled a track Opal Soft Green Kumquat Of The Sun, then you know no fear. Ectogram have done both these things, and done them while looking like raddled hippies who live in sheds, and - defying all received logic - remain rather fantastic. That their third full-length is only a shade under 70 minutes, arrives in possibly the worst sleeve Honk has ever seen, and boasts surely-piss-taking titles once more (The Horse Behind The Flower; My Owl) shouldn't deter you too much. Tall Things Falling retains some of the loopy pastorality of 2000's All Behind The Witchtower, but turns up the fuzz to leave Ectogram resembling a Welsh Sonic Youth more than anything. To Dream Of Acorns owes more than a little to the Youth's Teenage Riot, but is has enough individual momentum to delight on its own terms. Even when Ectogram blast into deep space (the ten-minute Glove Soup), it always feels like songwriting - they never scrabble around in pools of lysergic indulgence, always reigning this noise in tight to their chests. It's one of the most individual, truly psychedelic records you'll hear for a long time. But that doesn't mean you can't dig it too. www.ankst.co.uk

Noel Gardner
Honk    March 2002

Tall Things Falling


The most frustrating thing about this album is its length. It's a shame as "Tall Things Falling" is frequently excellent. Ectogram can, and do, write deliciously odd prog-pop psychedelia that brings to mind "Tatay"-era Gorky's, or an even less lucid Levitation, while never really sounding like anything other than Ectogram. Sadly, seventy minutes of the stuff, as this album demonstrates, is just too much to take. Even more infuriating than the exhausting effect on the listener, is the diminishing effect the album's length has on its impact - gems that would glisten on a shorter album, such as the almost jazz-like "Photos Of Toast" and swirly closing track "Spring Without Green" just seem to get lost amongst the rest of the glass in the kaleidoscope. Saying that, Ann Matthews' extraordinary voice complements the music perfectly, and if anything's going to stay in your mind after the album finishes, it's the vocals. Ultimately though, "Tall Things Falling" is just too sprawling to make the sort of impression Ectogram are capable of making. It's definitely not a forgettable record, but, maddeningly, it's one that could have been twice the album at half the length. www.ectogram.co.uk www.ankst.co.uk

Felicity Williams
Organ    May 2002

Tall Things Falling


Experimental Welsh trio follow up 2000's All Behind The Witchtower with noisier, less folk-imbued work.

While Branston recently saw fit to develpo a smooth version of their celebrated pickle, Wales' Ankst label continues to promote records admirably full of crunchy bits. Hence Ectogram's third LP - and Ankst's 100th release - makes your speakers squeal and rattle, treated vocals and all manner of sonic bolshieness driving Krautrock and psychedelia-influenced numbers with odd titles like My Owl, Apparatus On My Mind - imagine Sonic Youth and Altered Images jamming - is probably something of an aquired taste, but more melodic album-closer Spring Without Green should sit nicely with fans of fellow Welsh psychonauts Super Furry Animals. If you're looking for something more leftfield, this druggy experiment-fest should float your boat; those in more conservative social circles can use it to clear party stragglers.

James McNair
MOJO    March 2002



The 100th release on the estimable Welsh label Ankst is, sadly, not one of their finest. The Ectogram trio, from Bangor, have been pursuing their whimsical, patchouli-scented concept of psychedelia and Krautrock for some years now - this is their third album. At times it serves as an object lesson in how badly some of the elements from their source musics - well the humour, chiefly - translate to a modern context. Where contemporaries like Acid Mothers Temple (Ectogram admit to being admirers) locate the ecstatic, transformative powers of psych rock, Ectogram seem incapable of raising themselves out of the mire. Tall Things Falling, then, often resembles a soggy indie misunderstanding of Faust, further dogged by the breathy sing-song vocals of Ann Matthews - a kind of Clare Grogan for the free festival set.

John Mulvey
The Wire   May 2002