What a monumentally trance-inducing disc Spiral Joy Band and John W. Fail have produced. This is quite a unique experience, somehow comparable to a cross between Dirty Three and Growing. If you need a label then maybe something like "ecstatic minimal bluegrass drone" would fit (as completely ridiculous as that sounds). With the sheer amount of bowed strings and drones on "Pores in the Porch and Puddles Beneath", one would expect an experience more akin to a Tony Conrad performance, and while I would still consider this to fit into Conrad's idea of eternal music, Spiral Joy Band have created a more fleshed out dream world of their own. To put it another way, the music here gives off an impression of a physical place. The disc's title and nature-themed artwork echo this impression.
Still, the main focus here is the drone, and Sprial Joy Band get really deep. Lots of bowed strings and odd resonance coming from what sounds like an assortment of acoustic instruments all bleeding into one another abound. A surprising amount of controlled chaos and the aforementioned bluegrass fiddle twang mixed with touches of Indian raga are the most welcomed surprises, and make the disc stand out in the vast sea of drones- a great soundtrack for summertime mystical journeys beneath your porch.
9/10 -- Charles Franklin (24 July, 2007)