Foxygen drummer’s venture is a treasure trove of nostalgic gems

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Diane Coffee - 'My Friend Fish'

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Diane Coffee – ‘My Friend Fish’

Foxygen are the most messed-up band this side of Fat White Family, and their alumni are already splintering off into various side-projects. Diane Coffee is the turn of drummer Shaun Fleming, and compared to the often-misfiring studio material of his main band, ‘My Friend Fish’ is something of a revelation. Self-recorded in a two-week burst while Fleming was holed up in the band’s shabby Manhattan apartment recovering from the flu, the album pilfers liberally from the classics but proves he’s enough of a free-willed songwriter to make things more than just dull pastiche. At its best it’s like sifting through a treasure trove of half-remembered gems, the chief reference points all coming from the colourful side of the ’60s: late-era Beatles (the end of ‘Hymn’ is like ‘Get Back’), Tom Jones (‘All The Young Girls’) and, on glorious, breathy closer ‘Green’, the Jackson Five.

Matt Wilkinson

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Release date:18 Nov, 2013