We are enveloped by the silence of space and swallowed into a nebulous mist of weightlessness…floating far and wide into space.So reads the literature on the back cover of Russ Garcia's sci-fi Exotica masterpiece, Fantastica. I feel like I've heard a number of records in this subgenre, and the majority of them have been relatively aimless theremin squiggles and groans backed by dissonant-yet-humdrum string sections. This, on the other hand, is highly satisfying stuff-- with all the weirdness one might expect of 50's sci-fi music and more than enough of the lushness and sense of adventure one requires of an exotica/safari record. This is a safari on Jupiter, a SCUBA exploration in the seas of Neptune, a dinosaur sighting in the jungles of Venus. Or why don't I just let the track names speak for themselves:
Onward we fly—when an unbelievably forlorn and mournful sound reaches out to us…desolate and lonely beyond belief.
A sense of deep depression has settled over us, when, without warning, the grotesque monsters of Jupiter appear…is all of space filled with these unspeakable horrors? This is certainly no laugh in the dark.
As we whisk by this barren inferno a glowing, whirling mass appears in the distance. We are witnessing the birth of a planet.
During the final stage of our journey we watch breathlessly the lunar display before us—the exquisite moon rise in all its majestic and peaceful beauty…we’re almost home.
Lost Souls of Saturn Monsters of Jupiter
Water Creatures of Astra
Red Sands of Mars
Goofy Peepl of Phobos
Volcanoes of Mercury
Birth of a Planet
Go on this journey.
F A N T A S T I C A •320