schnauser

Buoyed by a forthcoming outing on the esteemed Fruits de Mer imprint sometime next month (featuring treatments of Yes and Soft Machine sorties the latter of whom appear to be a guiding influence given that ‘large groups of men‘ is indelibly kissed in the Canterbury psych prog tailoring of Messrs Wyatt and Co) mentioned here to much fond fanfare last missive out we’ve now managed to nab a copy (by way of much thanks to Alan of the band) of Schnauser’s frankly head turning sonic dream coat that is ’where business meets fashion’. distressingly for us their fourth album which means before we’ve even started our record collection is weeping at the gaping space its made for ’kill all humans’, ’the sound of meat’ and ’the missing link’. comprising ten tracks you’d be forgiven in the belief that this lot had a means for wandering backwards, forwards and up side down through time dimensions – between you and me I’m suspecting colourised TV’s and electricity are new fangled oddities to them, ’where business meets fashion’ is the kind of peculiar pop platter that would have sent such sadly lost record counter readable ware as Ptolemaic Terrascope and Freakbeat into such flights of tripped out wordsmithery that the resulting ink fumes would send subscribing patrons on a hallucinogenic voyage. Been an absolute age since we had the pleasure of featuring an album that’s so enjoyably crooked, affectionate and infectious. Be warned this is immense, so steeped in English eccentricity and nodding to classic tunesmiths of yesteryear (ie Davies as on the Kinks inspired ’pigeons’) the musicality is unreal the breadth and depth of the aural spectrum utilised is quite frankly bewildering and a word to those planning to raid your local record emporium to lightening their load of the abundance of 60’s compilations currently around at present (not that we want to encourage you do them out of the custom – buy the brace/choir album instead) we suggest you hook up to this because quite frankly it is a 60’s sonic sweet shop far more rewarding than most of those ill cobbled together collections. Oh my – where to begin – everything on here is worthy of a mention – we‘ve tried hard to find a track we hate but have miserably failed, ‘showers of blood’ I guess is as good a place as any, it is after all the opening track, a cross wiring kaleidoscopic mod topped psych prog power popper that called to mind the effervescent mastery of Epicycle’s 2002 set ’swirl’ yet scratch a little deeper and amid the intricate angular riff hookery honeycombs of bliss kissed Todd Rundgren creativity breathlessly drifts from out of the grooves. ’walking stick and cat’ decorated in lysergic fairground waltzes veiled in macabre Victoriana and warping reverse loops is crookedly flavoured in Barrett styled strangeness while XTC’s alter ego the Dukes of the Stratosphear are instantly called to mind when the punchy ’good looking boy’ rears into ear space. Those of you whose radars are attuned and indeed in awe of Love might be well advised to fall headlong in the lush tonalities offered by ’vaguely disturbed’ while devotees of nu psych a la the type once upon a while cooked up by the Elephant 6 collective should see out the smoking sophisticat p’s and q’s observing ’dinner party’ best of the set though comes tucked near the full lengths fall with ’I would’ which swoons and admiring sighs aside is finitely cut from the rarefied tune tapestry of the mighty Left Banke leaving the parting and dare I say vintage Beach Boys a la ‘wild honey‘ like ‘westward ho‘ to pack you off with a skip in your step and a knowing buzz about you that you may well have just stumbled across four of the finest alchemists of peculiar psych prog pop.

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