Phil Dirt - Reverb Central - PO Box 1609, Felton, CA 95018-1609 USA
The Langhorns - Mission Exoticadotdotdot
artworkOnce again, Sweden's Langhorns have transmuted into a new sound, entering Terra Incognito with one foot in exotica, and the other in surf, with some sidetrips into the garage.
Picks: Spybeat, In Your Fez, El Nino, Double Decker, Checkpoint Charlie, In The Lobby, La Ruta del Bacalao, Camel Ride, Chicken Race, Shop Talk, Slipstream, Las Vegas First Fight, Vera Cruise

Track by Track Review

Spybeat dotdotdot
Garage Spy (Instrumental)

A grindy chord progression foretells a garage spy theme with a scary chorus. Thick and moody, playful and a little strange. The break gets my vote as the best part, with the double picking and less repetitious sound.

In Your Fez dotdotdotdot
Surf Exotica (Instrumental)

Island guitar and bongos with a Middle Eastern melody that's hard to dislike. "In Your Fez" is a very pleasing song, with a bit of tweaky fifties Hollywood exotica about it, and an overall very cool sound. It's intense without being dominating, like a scene from an old black and white foreign legion film. Excellent!

El Nino dot
Garage Rock (Instrumental)

Chunk and charge chords almost lead you expect a Link Wray kinda thing, but it quickly changes into a trashy garagy rock piece, like Billy Childish after a bath. More garage jam than song.

Double Decker dotdotdot
Surf Exotica (Instrumental)

Right from the start, a catchy percussion rhythm sucks you in this fluid song. Long flowing notes, vibrato accents, and a kind of seventies wah-wah feel mixed with loungy chorus.

Checkpoint Charlie dotdotdotdot
Spy Surf (Instrumental)

"Checkpoint Charlie" opens with a fine rhythm track, and quickly launches a surfable spy melody that's catchy and moody. A little on the grodie side, yet really satisfying. The shimmer of the vibrato chords is excellent, and the whole composition works really well.

In The Lobby dotdotdotdot
Surf Exotica (Instrumental)

"En El Vestibulo" sports exotic drums and suave guitar, with surf elements and island mystery too. The melody flows out of the monitors like a distant mystery beckoning for your solution. Not many tracks work well at low and high volumes, but "In The Lobby" surely does.

La Ruta del Bacalao dotdotdotdot
Surf Exotica (Instrumental)

A soft electric rhythm and delicate lead float over a breezy bass and oh-so soft drums, creating a very pretty sound. "La Ruta del Bacalao" is very cool track so far, and that's just the intro! The main event sports a la playa feel conveyed by soft vibrato guitar and sax. Quite nice!

Camel Ride dotdotdotdot
Surf Exotica (Instrumental)

Bongos and perfect bass lines run under a Middle Eastern caravan trance that calls to the oasis. Moody and adventurous, and maybe a little Spanish. "Camel Ride" gradually builds power and film score grandiosity. A great track!

Chicken Race dotdot
Rock (Instrumental)

Grodie garage rock poultry spies, tipping a slight nod to Eddie Angel's carport. Somewhat dissonant, and more or less a thick progression based experience.

Shop Talk dotdotdot
Surf Exotica (Instrumental)

Tribal tom toms, a bouncy forties bass line, and jazzy liquid island guitar. Infectious and way fun, "Shop Talk" bounces with a country feel and palm tree air. The big whammy chords that fade to the tom tom prelude to the sax are something else. It has the henry Mancini coolness without the Hodad's geekiness. Very cool!

Slipstream dotdotdotdot
Surf (Instrumental)

A great rhythm drags you into this fine surfable song right from the outset. "Slipstream" is just plain cool, with a great melody line, catchy rhythm, and magnetic personality. Excellent!

Las Vegas First Fight dotdot
Garage Rock (Instrumental)

Chumpy and grindy chord progression garage rock with horns knocking out all comers. Energetic, and probably very cool live, but for this kind of horn work, I prefer the impeccable sounds of San Diego's Din. A little too seventies jammy for me.

Vera Cruise dotdotdot
Spy (Instrumental)

Cheesy percussion, a funky and interesting progression, wispy keys in the lead, and it's all you can do to avoid seeing a fifties tweaky spy film. Kinda like a film credit piece, with flute and just enough changes.