“If you like your duets albums off the planet and out there some this is the album for you”. Well of course we do!
|This is the latest album by Green Monkey Records head honcho Tom Dyer and this time it’s an album of collaborations with other artistes on the label and favored friends that I should have reviewed at least a month ago, but well since I first heard the album I have replaced the speaker system on the review system so I can hear all the madness in full.
The first plus 1 is Jim Of Seattle who orchestrates Everything In The World Is Returning To A State Of Nature that is gently effecting with vocals from Tom that sound like they should be on the soundtrack to a 50’s musical, The strings are very cool and the choir of backing vocals are quite cool too.
The second plus one is regular collaborator and daughter Kat Dyer who helps out on Seven Times Is Love a sort of story song with sparse odd instrumentation and almost angels and demons style backing vocals from Kat.
Death At Mounts Road brings in Amy Denio for a very involving story song that sounds like an offcut from the Chris Cutler/Lutz Glandien album Domestic Stories only this skronk pop disaster song is about an accident or was it with 52 injured and 3 dead it sounds like a horror show of a tale.
To contrast that When Roger Took The Bus is very sparse with just some gentle guitar from his son Ben and Ukelele from Roger Royset this is almost a nursery rhyme type piece and sounds like it would have fit on Songs To Annoy Small Children.
Next up is the first cover on the album of an Ornette Coleman song A Girl Named Rainbow recorded with Joe Cason it sounds almost Beefheartian and pretty interesting.
Things then go darkly tribal on Alaska (Put It On Your Head) with John Carey it’s off centre rather skewed like they want to make a tribute song for R.Stevie Moore but don’t know which persona to re-interpret so go for three or four at once this weirdly sort of works oh and it tests the new speaker set up pretty well as the vocals move around the speakers.
Libya is an old backing track from the Late Great Stax Legend Kenny Smith that he instructed Tom to add vocals too, it’s woozy laid back and soulful musically as Tom sings about some of the awful things that have happened in Libya in recent years and at Benghazi in particular, I hope there is a cool video to go with this song the horns on it sound magnificent.
The one of the solo efforts on the album is Meditations On Prince Bowie that is a compare contrast whose better argument about whose best Bowie or Prince that really does sound like the sort of song R. Stevie Moore would do with its weird conspiracy theory within in the lyrics.The next solo effort is Song Of Frogs a bass and Bass Clarinet led rumination on Frogs it’s spare and gently unsettling. Chet is another track with his daughter Kat I assume about Chet Baker it has a very spare jazz funk feel to it, this could easily be re-worked into a dance floor ready soul dance number.
In Heaven with Phil Herschi on Cello begins as a beautiful elegy and then distorts somewhat as the life being celebrated goes weird on us like life normally does before kind of going back to the gently eulogy but with almost stabbing Cello bits.
The second cover on the album is the old Dehumanizers song Godmen Of the Future that’s performed with help from no one by Tom as he turns it into a weird sort of Dimbulbs on acid trying not to freak out dirge of almost despair well until the children’s toy instrument come in to lift things.
Barbra with Mark Brunke that closes the album is a deep dive into Henry Cow type oddness as the Bass Clarinet fights the Alto sax and guitars it’s out there and awkward and still involving enough to make you listen to it.
If you like your duets albums off the planet and out there some this is the album for you find out more at www.greenmonkeyrecords.com