King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard: Murder of the Universe Review

By Carlos Chavez
Music Journalist

Artist: King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard
Album: Murder of the Universe
Release Date: June 23, 2017

Murder of the Universe is the tenth studio album released by the Australian psychedelic rock band. The record is the second of the five installments that are set to be released in 2017.

The 21-track album is a narrative story made up in the bands’ mind and spoken into existence by singer-songwriter Leah Senior and NaturalReader’s text-to-speech program – “UK, Charles”. However, do not let the lengthy number of tracks discourage you from giving this album a shot – tracks like “Some Context” run for only 16 seconds while others like “The Lord of Lightning” run up to 5:07 – making it a moderate 46:38 record, with 15:53 of narration guiding the listener through the stories.

In an interview with BBC Radio 6, lead singer Stu Mackenzie talks about how different this record is compared to previous ones.

“I think it is the most narrative-driven thing we have done – it is three distinct, but somewhat interrelated stories,” Mackenzie said.

The album is split up into three chapters, all of which have context in relevance to each other.

King Gizzard creates a post-apocalyptic world that go hand in hand with their kaleidoscopic sound, blending their psychedelic guitars and earsplitting harmonicas. The album’s intent is to tell the story about the destruction of humanity, massive mayhem, beasts, blood and demons. The closing chapter elicits very vivid sci-fi imagery; the narration and sound draw you in as Han-Tyumi the cyborg destroys the universe with his, well… vomit. While the aimless and incidental track changes might make it hard to keep up at times, the narration and theme of the story ultimately bring this genius work back in full circle.

10 albums in seven years, and with three more to be released this year, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard prove that creativity has no limits. Murder of the Universe is a peculiar record, not one for the faint of heart, yet a masterpiece for all psychedelic music lovers out there.

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