The Brian Jonestown Massacre

Mini Album Thingy Wingy

Written by: BV on 30/11/2015 12:17:45

New Brian Jonestown Massacre material has never quite been a scarce resource, but as of late there seems to an even more prolific workflow surrounding BJM mastermind Anton Newcombe. Having already released “Musique de Film Imaginé” under the BJM moniker and “I Declare Nothing” – a collaborative album by Newcombe and Tess Parks, I’d say I’m already well satisfied with the man’s output in 2015. However, in honor of the Brian Jonestown Massacre’s silver jubilee they not only embarked on an Australian tour – they also released a mini album, aptly titled “Mini Album Thingy Wingy”. Consisting of new material and a 13th Floor Elevators cover, this album simply marks yet another achievement in an already packed 2015 for Newcombe.

Opening with “Pish” we are immediately taken into a musical area traversed a multitude of times before by the BJM. It’s a musical structure well-known and well-loved, but with a vigor and vitality that is entirely unmistakable. Whether because of the two asynchronous tremolo guitars or the infectious little lead-guitar line splurged all over the song, there is a hypnotic quality to the track which maintains my interest for a rather lengthy time after I’ve flipped the record off my turntable. “Prší Prší” (English meaning would be something along the lines of: It’s Raining & Raining) features Vlad Nosal on vocals and is apparently the band’s first attempt at writing a song in Slovak. It’s a got a cool groove to it and in spite of my inability to understand the lyrics, the song simply seems packed with evocative moods nonetheless, as the musical side is frankly brimming with musical imagery.

On “Dust”, a cover of a 13th Floor Elevators classic, Newcombe is joined by yet another guest as Alex Maas from The Black Angels plays the iconic jug-sounds that have been forever linked to The 13th Floor Elevators. ”As I love you / All the creatures play / As I love you / Now it's safe to say / There's no hang up in our way” are classic lyrics ranking amongst my favorites, and it would be safe to assume that the 13th Floor Elevators’ material is sort of like a holy grail within psych – a grail that only a fool or someone incredibly confident would dare touch. Thereby it only seems strangely fitting that Newcombe has ended up taking a stab at it, and actually crafted a quite beautiful rendition of an understated classic. Kudos, mr. Newcombe.

“Here Comes the Waiting for the Sun” is the final track of “Mini Album Thingy Wingy”, ending things with a proper sendoff fueled by a manic romp and mind-bending backwards guitar solos – a relatively new feature in the BJM soundscape, if I am not entirely mistaken. So, when all is said and done, is this a good album or not? I’d wager it is, as the mini album explores musical territories well-known and loved by BJM fans as well as taking on new challenges. It shows a genuine progression in Newcombe’s songwriting and, quite frankly, it makes me yearn for a live show nearby. Maybe 2016 is the lucky year.


Download: Pish, Dust, Here Comes the Waiting for the Sun, Get Some
For the fans of: The Warlocks, Spacemen 3, The Dandy Warhols
Listen: Facebook

Release date 13.11.2015
A Recordings

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