Henry Jones from California’s cool Smiling C joins forces with celebrated selector, Charles Bals – ex-Cosmic Dude and curator behind Spacetalk’s cracking Club Meduse compilations – for a fresh collection of wonderfully eccentric earworms. Drum machine-driven Bontempi ballads, Casio keyboard curios, and lo-fi, soulful, drama-filled duets. Obscure excavations from no doubt countless dusty vinyl digs. The selections situated somewhere between 3 previous, classic, sets, namely Numero Group’s Planisphere, Efficient Space’s Sky Girl, and Chocolate Industries’ Personal Space.
Passionate proto-disco, and weird, echo-washed, jazz, plugged-in, switched-on, but fragile, folk – coping Laurel Canyon licks, Spanish leaning picking, tugging on heartstrings just like Tim Hardin – and reverb-rich outsider rock`n`roll. `50s and `60s pop from a parallel universe that’s a little bit Dion, and a little bit Alan Vega. All produced to a leftfield perfection on shoestring studio budgets.
There`s a sorta samba makeover of Todd Rundgren’s I Saw The Light, and a cute Olivia Newton John-esque cover of Survivor’s Rocky theme tune, Eye Of The Tiger. Mark & Suzann Farmer’s Waiting For The Dawn, with its snake-charming 6-strings, and theatrical story-telling, has more than a touch of the melodramatic Scott Walkers, and maybe the Jim Morrisons.
American Dream Reserve is out now, on Smiling C.