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Now at 71 years of age it seems that many light years have passed since Nik Turner spent some time in Hawkwind during their commercial peak from 1970-76. Whilst Dave Brock is the captain of the mothership Hawkwind he remains the only original member on board. After a couple of reunions between the two, it's now clear that Brock and Turner are both on different planets. Nik Turner has many ships to fly through the stratosphere and tonight is my first sighting of Space Ritual.

space ritual

The Borderline is packed out and the stage is crowded. Two drummers battle it out at the back, one time Hawkwind members guitarist Mike Slattery and keyboardist Thomas Crimble are at either end with an assortment of other musicians fighting for space with invited guests and the visual dancing antics of Miss Angel. Nik Turner stands firmly with his saxophone and flute and talks the lyrics rather than sing in an endearing manner that soon engages you into a cosmic world of mental reality.

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Space Ritual play a free form jazz fusion backed by hypnotic analogue synths that is almost punk rock in it's spirit. It's no wonder that Captain Sensible took the Hawks to his heart.

It didn't take long to be absored into the music which was throbbing through my brain and body. The title track from Space Ritual's album 'Otherworld' has a dub reggae feel with a slow heavy bass line. A song that was banned from Radio 1 at the time, 'Urban Guerilla', sounds so much better when performed live taking on a new leash of life.

Miss Angel wore golden wings and looked like a magical eagle swooping down on the Borderline to great visual effect on 'Children Of The Sun'. Nik Turner plays the madman on the thought provoking 'Sonic Attack' with the line of "Think only of yourselves".

space ritual

'Orgone Accumulator' saw guests Suzi Owen on the trombone and Bev Chrome on the trumpet blowing away, Turner encouraging the girls to do as they liked whenever they saw fit. The song went on for over fifteen glorious minutes with the girls fighting for breath at the end. Those in the audience were busy shaking to the rhythms whilst Miss Angel, now dressed in a sexy little red number, had to dance on the drinks table to the left of the stage.

With time running short Rania Bailey played some delightful flute on 'Brainstorm' with by now at least ten people on the stage.

I was blown away tonight. I boldly went to where no man has gone before. Space Ritual proved they really are the masters of the universe.

Set list

Born To Go
Watching The Grass Grow
Ritual Of The Ravaged Earth
Urban Guerilla
Children Of The Sun
Sonic Attack
Seven And Seven Is
Reefer Madness
Orgone Accumulator
Walking Backwards



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