Saturday 31 August 2013

Sir Psych - Hello Echo

Album review by

Sir Psych takes us by the hand and gently leads us down the rabbit hole with a kaleidoscopic, psych swirl of echoing vocals and lysergic hazes of sound with the opening (and near title-track) track of 'Hello Echo (Part One)'. Like walking down a barren, sun-kissed road where the shimmering heat haze obscures all. Then before you notice you are enticed into second song 'Gentle Rivers'. The pace remains as sedate as before; swathes of organs colour the sepia tinged sounds. There are nods to early Floyd, and distant waves to J. Spaceman as we are slowly consumed, letting it all wash over us.

 'Things Are Getting Better Everyday' draws you out of the ebbing waters. It is lit by crystalline keys and chiming guitar. It has lightness to it which works well against the sun bleach crawl of before. Brighter still is 'Exit Light' which takes 'Riders on the Storm' and gives it a scintillating, but brief, update. 'The Same' harnesses the same primitive Americana blues so beloved of Mazzy Star. 'The Same' has a depth and richness to it that will reward you on with repeated visits. The song glides out on some charming, near conventional, pop melody. This pop undercurrent underpins 'Hello Echo (Part Three)'. Like some lost sixties pop gem spliced with a Zombie-esque nugget vibe, this is a sweet, delightful song. It trips by like a summer's breeze. Follower 'If That’s Where You Want To Be' is less successful. It suffers from a lack of cohesion; while having some lovely little touches, it fails to gel like that which has preceded it.

'Eve' almost falls foul of the same disjointed nature, but it has a near childlike, exquisite melody running through it that lifts it away from any mire. And so Sir Psych stars to draw 'Hello Echo' to a close with the penultimate song 'So Long I’m Gone'. It's the sound of the end, end of a night, end of the day, end of love. Slowing everything down. Expelling the tensions, taking that last sip, last toke, and slowly shutting everything away. The album draws out on a warped, melting instrumental, 'Goodnight Echo'. And so Sir Psych bids us farewell from his beguiling, enchanting, perplexing but fascinating album.

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