I’ve avoided this band up to now, not least because of the bloody silly name. However I was rather taken with their recent LP Paper Mâché Dream which reminded me of another daftly named band Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci at their lysergic best. That record suggested there was more to the band than the somewhat formulaic ‘Psych’ the name suggests, and indeed there is. In fact they play very little from that (more acoustic) record, opting instead to play a lot of new stuff and speedier early stuff that keeps the rather excitable crowd happy. The first few tunes are fantastic, stop-start mix of punk energy and almost Proggy timeshifts and brassy crescendos which reminds me of nothing less than The Cardiacs. A flute emerges at one point and I’m treated to the spectacle of people stage diving to something that sounds to my ears like something by Magma. It’s all rather delightful. This is far from your generic heads-down Psych rock riffage. There’s a real diversity to what they do which keeps you guessing – occasionally settling down into breezy Soft Rock, diverting into epic Krautrock wig-outs, before hurtling into a Black Sabbath-esque freak out or even a gob-iron driven Dr Feelgood style stomper. (I really don’t know what any of the songs are called so you’ll have to take my word for it). The 7 piece line up boasts 3 guitars, 2 drummers and a guy alternating between keyboards, percussion, gob-iron and backing vocals which makes for a really powerful and impressive racket.
Capacity crowd, probably on the younger side and going fairly bonkers nearer the front – much stage diving, moshing and (annoyingly) hurling of expensive lager into the air but fortunately not in the direction of me and the older folk at the back. Pesky kids. The band took in all in their stride though.
It made me think..
I should check out more of their stuff – except like their pals Ty Segall, Thee Oh Sees et al they already have a discography to rival Sun Ra or The Fall so I’m not sure where to begin. What is it with these Psych guys and quality control?