Friday, June 15, 2012

Review: The See See- "Fountayne Mountain"

Hailing from London, The See See have taken the jangle of  the obvious (The Byrds, Buffalo Springfield, Love), a dash of early '90's Creation Records and filtered these excellent influences through their own creativity and excellent musicianship and vocal prowess. The album starts off with the vibe setting 'Waltz", which quickly gives way to "Open Up Your Door", a song that could have easily fit on "The Notorious Byrd Brothers". Gorgeous harmonies float above song craft that is genuinely on the level of the '60's greats; best of all, it's a standard which continues for the entire record.

Next up is "Automobile" which shows the more aggressive side of the band (yet still retaining the melodic edge that makes this band so downright incredible); this track is followed up by "Sweet Hands" which could be a great lost Stone Roses track with harmonies overdubbed by the spirit of Carl and Dennis Wilson. Yes, it's THAT good; as I get older and jaded, it's a great thrill to hear a band that is giving it everything they've got. After twenty years of indie rock boredom, hopefully this release from the See See will influence more bands to wake up and start delivering the goods.

Side two begins with the lovely "Sunbleached"; a groovy, in all it's organ-driven glory, that you put on and dance around the living room with your loved one taking a moment to forget about everything other than the moment in hand. In times like these, we truly NEED music like this.

The advance single (pressed on a 45, woo HOO!) is the sublime "Gold And Honey"; a perfect summertime (or any time) jam that should be an international #1 hit jam. Of course I'm biased as a fanatic of 1960's music and culture, but when a band can take elements of the '60's and inject their own personality into the sound (which The See See are top notch at achieving) without pandering to cliche THAT is success.

Coming towards the end is the title track; the epic instrumental "Fountayne Mountain". Laying down the darkest groove of the record, the band ventures deep into heavy psychedelia territory, yet still keeps the melodic jangle focused in the mix, making sure the track doesn't veer into self-indulgence. Closing track "The Day That Was The Day" reminds us that we have been listening to an ALBUM; creatively sequenced by a band that is at their stride. The heavy groove of the title track is maintained, with a dark vocal melody that is the peak of the previous half hour's worth of brilliant music, and brings the statement to a close. Just as "You Set The Scene" ends Forever Changes. Yes, it's THAT GOOD.

Vinyl is limited to a mere 750 copies (I ordered mine from Norman Records in the UK); it's bound to sell out and become a massive collectable, as this band is on to big things, me thinks.

"Sweet Hands" ripped from vinyl

1 comment:

  1. Very similar to Michel Polnareff's "la poupee qui fait non" which was also covered by the Birds with an "i"!