Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
Collection: Instro-Hipsters A Go-Godotdotdot
artworkEgad, what a strange journey this is. It starts out with a wheelbarrow full of spies eating cheese, and eventually migrates into a psychedelic swirl of concocted studio strangeness. I have to confess that I enjoyed the disc, but it's not for the faint at heart. It's all from vinyl, about half in stereo, and mostly pretty clean. Often ridiculous, sometimes brilliant, and always outside the norm, Instro-Hipsters A Go-Go will take you all the places you didn't want to go, and leave you making reservations for your next visit. No surf here, just voiceless beats.
Picks: Fade Out, Breathalyzer, Getaway, Rock Candy, Go Mean, Look Out Now, Big Beat, Step Inside, I Wish I Could Jerk Like My Uncle Cyril, Husky, Zoom, Widge and Wag, Sulphur Flowers, Mathar, The Eliminator, Theme For Twiggy, Teen Tonic , Bizwambi, Moon Walk, China, Warinobaril, Wild Jam, Western Drag, Jericho Jerk , Queen Street Gang

Track by Track Review

Fade Out dotdotdot
Prisoner Lounge (Instrumental)

Sloshy spies and deceit in the vein of the theme from the Prisoner. Splashy and TV oriented, with saucy horns and slip-her-a-Mickey martini thinking.

Breathalyzer dotdot
Psychedelic Mall (Instrumental)

A bit of fuzz and organ, a slushy British sounding melody riff played out on the console organ, you have everything you need to know. Like Brian Auger at the mall.

Getaway dotdotdot
Psychedelic Klezmer (Instrumental)

Big guitar, lightweight playing, nearly Klezmer oboe, and you have one bizarre number with a sloshy tumbler feel and a speedy edge. Orchestral strangeness from under the bed.

Rock Candy dotdot
Piano Jam (Instrumental)

Jammin', then some more jammin', and finally, some jammin'. tasty piano rolling out a buncho notes, but it never gets beyond the jam stage. It hints of some of the lighter material from Wig Wam, but without the charm.

Go Mean dotdotdot
Hollywood Psychedelic (Instrumental)

Nothing mean about this bongo and orchestral spy fluff. You can just see the liquid color double images and body painted nymphs writhing in ecstasy - oh, wait, that was a movie...

Look Out Now dotdot
Psychedelic Lounge (Instrumental)

If this isn't Henry Mancini's "A Shot In The Dark," then there's no Santa Claus (don't burst my bubble). Aside from copping the melody and most of the arrangement, it's like Mancini was writing about a carnival instead of Peter Sellers.

Big Beat dotdotdot
Surf Lounge (Instrumental)

Surf guitar twang, a "Walk On The Wild Side" feel, and an adventurous rhythm. The horns in the lead take it to the movies. Interesting, if only for it's inventiveness.

Step Inside dotdotdot
Circular Lounge (Instrumental)

Implying you're outside, "Step Inside" meanders through a long introductory jam only to land in a mindless guitar noodle exercise. This transition repeats itself repeatedly in a redundantly redundant fashion. Only the faux harpsichord makes it interesting.

I Wish I Could Jerk Like My Uncle Cyril dotdotdot
Lounge Blues Jam (Instrumental)

Not one single ounce more than a standard blues riff. Not one iota of new or recreative music. But, hey, the hand clapping party sounds and vibes are cool.

Husky dot
Organ (Instrumental)

An organ "Hole In The Wall" or "Wade In The Water" kinda super-simple boring do-da. Uttering "husky" with a moron voice does not improve it.

Zoom, Widge and Wag dotdot
Psychedelic TV (Instrumental)

Yeah, and where does this bus go? Nowhere, man... The percussion is pretty cool, reminiscent of Sandy Nelson, but the big organ and horns stuff is just too much, especially when the chorus shouts "Pow!"

Sulphur Flowers dotdotdot
Psychedelic Flower Shop (Instrumental)

"Sulphur Flowers" is built upon an interesting rhythm and spooky distorted guitar. Odd effects, spacy sounds, weird scenes, and strings... It's like Family trying to be Pink Floyd.

Mathar dotdotdot
Psychedelic Sitar (Instrumental)

The sitar raga rock sound gets a booster chair for its birthday. Rising to the occasion, the Dave Pike Set make this meandering piece float like smoke in an opium den. More interesting than most here, and kinda psychedelic in a mystical kinda way. It doesn't mathar, does it? (Sorry ed.)

The Eliminator dotdotdot
Indian (Instrumental)

The Eliminators do a nice job with this. "Eliminator" is on the soft side, but it has a surfy edge via warm whammy, and it infects the listener. Bells toll for a spaghetti western influence. A little dramatic in that British way, but still very cool.

Theme For Twiggy dotdotdot
Psychedelic Fashion (Instrumental)

Almost as thin and wistful as miss Twiggy herself, "Theme For Twiggy" floats softly upon a saffron cloud as if the to imply that she who hums when she walks fast is somehow above us all. The big production mid section, with it's chorus and all, is beyond redemption.

Teen Tonic dotdotdot
Psychedelic Lounge (Instrumental)

This is the kind of thing studio producers created when psychedelia came along. They had nor more clue about this than they did about surf or hot rod, but that certainly didn't stop them. In some ways, it's like Mike Deazy's Friar Tuck and his Psychedelic Guitar. Electro tweak, organ weirdness.

Bizwambi dotdot
Psychedelic Carnival (Instrumental)

Brian Augerisms pumped out all through this carnival for lost drug addicts. No, it's not really interesting, just thumpy.

Moon Walk dotdotdot
Psychedelic Tweaky (Instrumental)

Sorta like a merger between Pink Floyd's "Money" and Cabaret Voltaire's cover of the Seeds "No Escape," this slushy wanderer is waiting at a bus stop near you, where it presents an endless array of electro tweak and predictable guitar lines. Yet, it somehow has a perverse attraction about it.

China dotdotdotdot
Psychedelic (Instrumental)

"China" is a tribal Fillmore kinda thing, with a great relentless bass and drum line, swelling electro-echo-guitar effects and an evolving drugged out lead guitar. It's not melodic, but it is very effective and quite an adventure in the have of a bygone era.

Warinobaril dotdotdotdot
Psychedelic Lounge (Instrumental)

Slow and very slowly evolving, "Warinobaril" boasts a hazy vision of a far off land where you only think you can partake of the herb without hassle. Some of the disturbing guitar stuff is very edgy, especially for the time. It's a little like an evolving drone behind a mad axman. What'cha gonna do without lard anyway?

Wild Jam dotdotdot
Psychedelic Jam (Instrumental)

There must be a reason for this, but I can't quite find it. It's not in the flute lead. It's not in the fluffy melody line. Nor is it in the non-directional jam. Oh, wait, it's a jam. That makes it OK!

Western Drag dotdotdot
Psychedelic Blues (Instrumental)

Distant psychedelic blues harmonica over a relentless bass line, with a haunting and slightly enticing sound. I wish I hated this, but I don't. It's kinda fun.

Jericho Jerk dotdotdot
Psychedelic Lounge (Instrumental)

Electro tweak for the sake of electro tweak. Much of what happened when electronics entered the music world via Moog and Dick Hyman was more about being odd than interesting. While this fits that description, there's a strange attraction to this track. Lots of cycling sounds and reverb and echo keeping the jam afloat.

Queen Street Gang dotdotdot
Psychedelic Lounge (Instrumental)

Very slow jammin' evening softness, with the beat that hip-hop would later adopt as if it was the only beat. It doesn't really go anywhere, but it is a pleasant ride on a subway.