Album – Psycho Surfin’ – The Morrisons

Posted by admin on August 10th, 2006

Although initially misleading with both the title and the title track intro, this isn’t an album that harkens back to the days of Jan and Dean or the Beach Boys. It does however owe more than a passing debt of gratitude to the Byrds. You remember them, they were the dudes that sang arguably one of the best Bob Dylan covers ever, “Mr Tambourine Man”, which was also covered by William Shatner, yes that Star Trek guy, but we don’t like to talk about that. Yes the jangly guitars are there, but the vocal styles is quite different, reminding me more the 80s indie scene. So yes quite an interesting mash up, but it works particularly well.

There’s 14 tracks on the album, but 2 of those comprise of the Pyscho Surfin; into and outros, which weigh in at nearly a minute each and actually seem a bit misplaced compared to the rest of the album, but still pleasant in themselves. There’s a couple of songs that made for interesting listening, but the album as a whole was thoroughly entertaining. “Southbound Train” has all the familiar Byrds hallmarks. “Grab the Key” and “The Whistle Blowers Daughter” were probably my favorite tracks on the album. There is one track, “Arrow in Your Heart”, that for some reason rubbed me up the wrong way. The music itself is fine, but there’s something odd about the vocals, which I can’t quite put my finger on.

I mentioned earlier the mashup of styles, but I think it’s the production that I found most endearing. It’s obvious that this is not a big budget album. The production has a very live, rustic feel to it, as do the vocals, but it’s got that something that had me smiling, and smiling even more once I realised I was. It’s very obvious that these guys are having fun and it radiates from the album.

Conclusion : Certainly something quite different and actually quite refreshing. Lo-fi, but hi-fun.

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