After causing a ripple with their oddball psychedelia for their previous EP, Arizona’s Emby Alexander return again with a longer EP but one which certainly doesn’t compromise on madness. In fact, it possibly doubles it.
‘Lie Down In The Ocean’ brings back the unhinged vocals, accompanied by what appears to be the sounds of a vintage carnival. Once the song settles down there’s an air of obscure 1960’s pop about the track, filtered through a modern dreampop veil. On ‘I Don’t Mind If You Call Us Friends’, there’s an abundance of harmonies (or even “disharmonies”) and vocal manipulation, with even more extreme techniques used on Jim Perkins’ “Cattle Class Mix” treatment of ‘Dressed Undressing’. Meanwhile, the ghostly surf pop of ‘O Here We’re Tangled’ rubs shoulders with the distinctly tribal feel to ‘Manieres’; a song which evokes Adam And The Ants on a baroque holiday.
As before there are times when Emby Alexander’s persistence in sounding weird can get in the way of a good song but overall the balance is about right. Recalling variously The Walkmen on happy pills or the more exuberant material of early Mystery Jets, one might actually need a lie down in the ocean after listening to this crazed but compelling set of songs.
Deerhunter, Mystery Jets, Adam And The Ants