Sunday 22 April 2012

Paul Messis & Jessica Winter - Sunflower

Single review by KevW

Over the course of three singles and an album, West Sussex songwriter Paul Messis hasn't exactly borrowed from the 1960s, it's more a case of smashing the decade's shop front and wholesale looting and pillaging everything it has to offer. They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and that's the sense you get from all of Messis's recordings, from the threadbare west-coast garage rattle of previous tracks through to this latest offering: sincerity. There's a clear passion and will to replicate those sounds as faithfully as possible. Such tendencies can be overbearing when taken too seriously but that's not a trap Messis and his muse here, Jessica Winter, fall in to. There's a sense of fun and even a sense of pastiche here that's wonderfully unashamed.

'Sunflower' is a hazey fug of buzzing sitars and humming amps intent on bringing the swirling kaleidoscopic images of 60s psychedelia to life in an aural form. At first it seems too much but soon the curiosity becomes a smile as you realise that's the whole point, and what's more, it's a heck of a lot of fun and the woozy harmonies are actually quite sublime in an early Jefferson Airplane kind of way. B-side 'As Nightmares Turn To Dreams' also drifts its way around the room with the slow jangle of guitars and tambourine and that dreamy combination of voices once again. It's over the top, a little ridiculous but, most importantly, an intoxicating piece of ear candy.

Paul Messis' website

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