By The Pocket Gods
The Pocket Gods are the brainchild of singer songwriter Mark Lee and despite the mention of "various guest artists" this is a fairly solo sounding affair - distorted vocals, distorted guitar over a cheap and particularly monotonous drum machine. Apparently drawing influences from Beck (yes they are both men), Badly Drawn Boy (again men) and Syd Barrett (Yes he also has a nose).
This 10-song offering is at best a songwriter's collection of ideas ready to be turned over to a band, a demo in the truest sense. As can be expected with such a collection, a healthy mix of bright ideas and dirge co-exist.
Highlights include "Only UFO's take the insane" with it's dreamy outro and life on other planets references, "I've got a VVBUD" with its blow-up voodoo doll concept, and "Dandelion" with its perfect 3 minutes of instrumental summer surf pop. In fact the lack of vocals on the latter is a particular relief from the nagging tactic of masking Mr Lee's flaaaat naayysel vocal with thick distortion and sharp EQ'ing.
If there is humour and wit below the surface it is well disguised and there is little here to really crumple the lapels of most. With some external influences added the bedroom blinkers could well be shed.