3 Jun 2012

Mordecai Smyth - Sticky Tape & Rust

Reviewed By The Active Listener.

Do you pine for the days of the mid sixties where it wasn't necessary to make a major statement with every song and one could quite happily write a mischievous song about a witch on a bicycle? Then read on.
Mordecai Smyth capture the atmosphere of swinging, pre-flower power England with such uncanny accuracy that it's hard not to imagine them sitting in front of the fire, crumpet in hand, watching the latest episode of the Avengers between takes.
If one can imagine an alternate universe where Pink Floyd continued along in the mod vein of their Lucy Leave / King Bee demos instead of turning to psychedelic nursery rhymes and freakouts, then you'll have a pretty good idea of what to expect here. Concise, whimsical mod pop, with swinging organ and beat guitars.
It's all a great deal of fun and shows Smyth to be a natural successor to the clever, observational character studies perfected by the likes of Ray Davies and Syd Barrett.
While the sound is generally rooted firmly in 1965 mod / beat territory, there are a few surprises to be had. "I've Been So Tired" cranks up the psych factor with a gently shimmering sitar accompaniment and a trippy guitar outro, while "With One Arm Tied" finishes with a completely unexpected and rather lovely bit of wobbly mellotron.
It's all impeccably crafted, and if you're a fan of early Floyd, the Kinks, the Who at their poppiest, the Artwoods or English sixties pop culture in general, you really do need a copy of this in your collection.
There's even an endorsement from legendary psych pop producer Mark Wirtz on their website, and if it's good enough for him, it's certainly good enough for me.

You can buy it on vinyl here. And on CD here. 

You'll be able to read an interview with Mordecai Smyth here in the next few days. 

1 comment:

  1. I dig!.....John Fallon of THE STEPPES....a wacky fun time....