October 6, 2000
[B]Mike Myers[/B], you will be unsurprised to learn, is thanked...
You crazy guys, you kill me. No, really. You sap my will to live. With your kitsch '60s packaging, pseudo-psychedelic babble and your crazy epilogue; 86 ten-second loops of crashing waves and buried sounds. 'Bali'? At times, it's more like hell.
Wondermints form the nucleus of Brian Wilson's 12-strong touring band. This, however, does nothing to legitimise their fastidious, goggle-eyed recreation of all things '60s. Moreover, shortly after entering their acid-fried Age Of Aquarius, you will neither know nor care where genuine passion ends and irony begins.
Which isn't to say (frustratingly enough) that they're absolute shite. Recalling, oddly and variously, Supergrass, Elvis Costello and Peter Skellern (in their Beach Boys/ dream-pop periods, naturally), Wondermints do have the odd adorable, pop puppy. Most of the album, however, you'd happily put in a sack and chuck in the canal. 'My Id/Entity' (Jesus!), with its period harpsichord, and Andy Williams-meets-The Doors schtick, 'Chris-Craft No 10' (see ELO) or 'Cellophane'(see Wings), would sink easily under the weight of their own slavish mimicry.
But, enough of the music. For you may not even get that far. "Absolutely no gamelans performed on this album," chortle the deranged sleeve-notes, where you'll find references to band members playing, "dolphin safe tuna'd guitar". Mike Myers, you will be unsurprised to learn, is thanked.
Why so heavy, man? Well, because it's emotionally stilted, recognition comedy, which misses the fundamental point that had Brian Wilson endlessly copied, say, Bill Haley, Wondermints would never have heard of him.
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