This is a review of "Mr Charming EP" recorded by Mr Charming. The review was written by Andy James in 2005.
Now here's a curious bugger if ever there was one. I first saw Mr Charming about nine months ago supporting Higher Sights at the Mixing Tin where they seemed to be playing a mix of Jane's Addiction style funk metal with some basslines which sounded more akin to Ian Dury and the Blockheads. Even more impressive was the fact that they pulled it off quite well. With this EP though, it's clear that either this band has evolved a very long way since then or that was only the tip of the iceberg - this truly is lower-than-lo-fi indie at its very weirdest.
Having said that, you certainly can't fault 'em for trying and, even though I'll readily concede that lo-fi music isn't really my thing, the innovation on this thing undoubtedly catches your ear - Mr Charming sound more than anything like a band who are trying to bring about a million different influences to the fore all at once... it's certainly not every day where you can hear traces of the Mars Volta, The Redskins and Gang of Four all in the space of a few seconds. The only drawback is that, perhaps unsurprisingly, it gets a bit messy at times with so many different sounds trying to come to the fore.
Very much an acquired taste then. But credit to them for at least setting out to do something different. If lo-fi's your thing, you might wanna give this a listen.