You know how it is, take your eye off the ball for a solitary second and the blighters go sneaking all manner of grooviness on their associated media pages. Word has it that those Mega Dodo dudes are planning to release an album inspired by Aleister Crowley featuring music by Jon Povey and Twink of legendary folk the Pretty Things. Under the guise Star Sponge Vision’, the set, due to land around Spring, goes by the name ‘Crowley and Me’ – by all accounts originated as an idea way back in 1974 and finally got nailed in reality late last year, now its not the first time that ‘the beast’ has featured in these pages, we made mention of a spoken word pressing in our Halloween hullabaloo. Anyway there’s a detailed backstory about the release somewhere here http://www.mega-dodo.co.uk/products/star-sponge-vision?mc_cid=4c7eb04a7c&mc_eid=30e0e30476
In addition to that, you may well recall us mentioning, somewhat briefly, this years,now trademark, Mega Dodo charity release ‘tiddywinks’ – if not see here – https://marklosingtoday.wordpress.com/2017/11/04/tiddlywinks/ – strictly limited to just 100 copies with profits going in support of the sterling work done by Save the Children, this very special collection is a cosy tour back to childhood with an invited roster of familiar names all gathered around the school piano heartily harking to forgotten lullabies and nursery rhymns. So spoilt for choice here, so lets start then with Us and Them who here tenderly tease their way through ‘Julie dream of all the pretty little horses’ by whittling out a delicately weaved folk hymnal sweetheart whose eexpansive touch takes you on mistical fairy walk into the hushed ethereal realms of sleepy headed magic lands. Elsewhere, the Luck of Eden Hall, who you may well note have been a little quiet around these here parts, are found teamed up with Razorhouse’s Mark Panick for a kaleidoscopically fracturing visit to ‘one for sorrow’ into the bargain completely rewiring the original to its bare base elements and reconstructing it into a wiring schizoid freak blues stone pill. ‘Jack and Jill’ gets a hearty shrooming revamp from the recently missing in action, well missing around here at least, Sky Picnic who I wouldn’t be none too surprised to find, had been listening a lot of Smoke Fairies and Haigt Ashbury of late, because this is exactly what you’d expect if ever the two forged ties. One for Floyd admirers I suspect though with a side serving of the great Bevis one, despite it’s fragmenting wah wah’s and general all around wasted trippiness, left in the hands of Mordecai Smith ‘oranges and lemons’ still ominously looms darkly like a ghostly Victorian shanty, very Paul Roland it has to be said, the ‘here comes a candle’ moment has never sounded so real or for that matter, so chilling and menacing. https://megadodo.bandcamp.com/album/tiddlywinks
If we were drawing up a lengthy list of records we’ve adored, in an attempt to whittle the pile into a comfortable picking that could be shoehorned safely into a suitcase for our dispatch to a desert island, ‘slow death’ and ‘shake some action’ would certainly figure high. We refer of course to the legendary Flamin Groovies of whom I’m going to stick my neck out now and say, took up the mantle of the Stones when the Stones stopped making crucial records, I mean ‘slow death’ just sweats n’ oozes tension in terms of desire both sexual and desperation, at once sassy and slinky, nails that Richards’ bluesy flick kick, hells teeth this is prime time cold cool Stones framed pristinely in 5 and a half minutes – what is there not to love? ‘Shake some action’ on the other hand, okay let’s put it this way, if you were to ask me to come up with a track that embodied at once elements of 60’s garage, hints of West Coast and the latent buzz of the new wave / punk scene in which it was forged, into the bargain inadvertently crafting a hybrid power pop classic, then this is it, every band that ever did jangly guitars owes this big time. Anyhow, how did we get here, ah yea, new Flamin Groovies, well old but kinda new, a live set ‘San Francisco Nights 1978 -80’ – capturing the Groovies at the height of their powers, plenty of Stones covers, ‘shake some action’ is in attendance yet sadly no ‘slow death’. Still stupidly cool. https://vogon.bandcamp.com/album/san-francisco-nights
oh and here’s ‘Slow death’ ….