Not only that, but we recorded a CD split with LAMP in 2008 and gigged a lot to support that at the time – basically you could say I am fairly accustomed to the band at this stage. So you could see this review as one of two things – (1) a heartfelt and reasoned summation of this engaging, fun and genuinely original Irish band’s debut full-length album or (2) a sickening loveslurp right up the hot shorts of the two talentless jerks who somehow managed to squeeze this whole CD out without disbanding or generally wandering off in a daze looking for fags and energy drinks. Pick one or the other, I don’t really give a shit. In fact, I can’t believe you’re actually still reading.
What drew me to LAMP in the first place was their ability, creativity and mixture of original elements – what essentially sounds like the theme tune to a cartoon dog played by Primus and Helmet under a sean nós flatcapped aulfella belting out a lament in the corner of a thatched pub.
You really need a description that retarded to really snatch up the essence of this band. Comprised of Timmy ‘Ted’ Murphy on drums and Shane ‘Ramdass’ O’Leary on guitar and vocals, the sound created is (for the most part) simple and familiar in texture but wild and unpredictable in structure. Earthy, natural tom and cymbal sounds and heavy, grungy distortion flicks back and forth with spritely jazz rhythms and trippy psychedelia.
Neatly packaged personal fave ‘The Mate’ has a bassy preamble not unlike John Wayne doing a monkey impression and comes with a great, emotive strained vocal. There are ballad interludes, string sections, bouncy circus music – it’s a lot like that old Kia-Ora ad where an unending stream of surreal figures amble breezily past your bewildered brains (that was Kia-Ora wasn’t it?)
Anyway – it would probably be easier to explain what you DON’T hear on Sagittarius. This album is something that keeps revealing itself (er…) and you’re never quite finished with it. And you’d want to like that; unprovoked mood swings that kick you one minute and drop the hand the next can be frustrating for someone who is only at home listening to The Ramones. But I guess if that was you, you wouldn’t be reading a review of Sagittarius – you’d be off somewhere trying to listen to The Ramones.
20% if you don’t like time-changes