Hailing from Richmond, Virginia, Space Koi has been delivering an unbelievable blend of psychedelic rock & reggae since 2016. With their latest release, Brainwash Box, they are not only out to showcase their eclectic range, but also incite a wave of change. The combination of in your face instrumentals and unfiltered commentary on the state of the world we live in makes it impossible to ignore their ever important message.
The album opens with a driving, high energy intro that even metal heads would appreciate, which then leads seamlessly into what I thought was a much more ska influenced track, “Mind Over Matter”. The title track “Brainwash Box” gave me a serious thrash vibe with it’s anti-government anthem and hardcore riffs throughout the entirety. They immediately take us in the opposite direction with “Buffalo Fart”, a psychedelic instrumental that will make even the most timid get in the groove. “Ballad of the Ganja Smuggler” is a funky, laid-back reggae love song to the sticky green and all those who do their part to bring it to us thankful folk. “Riptide” truly shows off the range of the group. It starts off fast paced and reminiscent of surfer rock but eases into a funkadelic groove. “Hate” is a call-to-arms for all those seeking change in the world and will undoubtedly get stuck in your head. With “Bad Man”, Space Koi & Kana Kiehm remind us things aren’t always as they seem, especially when those who serve only serve themselves. For the finale they pull out all the stops and hold nothing back. The album ends with “Bablyon Must Fall”, an absolute face melter of a song.
Brainwash Box does an amazing job of blending a message more important than ever with unique songs that will captivate you whether you are an up-in-arms anarchist, peace-loving hippie, or anywhere in between. I highly recommend this album & catching Space Koi next time they are in your town.