Another batshit psychedelic classic from down under
Since Kevin Parker started Tame Impala in 2007, antipodean psychedelia has steadily gathered an audience eager to have their minds bent. Following the release of second album ‘Lonerism’ in 2012, Parker’s band have cracked the UK Top 20, played megashows with Arctic Monkeys and amassed a worldwide fanbase. Their success has brought attention to former bassist Nick Allbrook and drummer Jay Watson’s band Pond, who made their breakthrough four albums in with the eccentric psychedelia of 2012’s ‘Beard, Wives, Denim’. On the more batshit end of the scale, artists such as Connan Mockasin and Unknown Mortal Orchestra, both from New Zealand, has also resonated. Flute-toting septet King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, from Melbourne, are hoping the same goes for them.
‘I’m In Your Mind Fuzz’ is the group’s fifth record – their first for UK label Heavenly Recordings – and it impressively steers a path between repetitive motorik and dreamy melody. It’s split roughly into three parts: a four-song intro, a wild mid-section and an intimate conclusion. In the intro, three of the four tracks are named after variations of the album’s title (‘I’m In Your Mind’, ‘I’m Not In Your Mind’, ‘I’m In Your Mind Fuzz’) and whoosh into each other in a surge of exaggerated riffs and soloing, and pounding percussion from drummers Eric Moore and Michael Cavanagh (yes, two of them) that even Pond might deem over the top.
The mid-section is bound together by flutters of flute, and veers from despondent glam-rock (‘Empty’) to freakish folk that’s like New York’s Woods on fast-forward (‘Hot Water’) via Thee Oh Sees-ish garage on ‘Am I In Heaven?’. As the album nears its end, things get more sultry. Frontman Stu Mackenzie’s vocals are warm and affected on ‘Slow Jam I’, and ‘Satan Speeds Up’ could be mistaken for a track from UMO’s 2011 debut, if it weren’t for the wild Sabbath riffing. ‘Her & I (Slow Jam 2)’ – an eight-minute carousel of twanging country guitars – concludes a mind-boggling but perfectly executed journey. They’re too wilfully mad to emulate Tame Impala’s success, but if you’re after a freaking out, King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard’s outrageous noise deserves attention.
Record label: Heavenly Recordings
Release date: 15 Dec, 2014