Psychedelic Porn Crumpets
And Now for the Whatchamacallit


4.0
excellent

Review

by Jack Wilson USER (6 Reviews)
May 31st, 2019 | 17 replies


Release Date: 2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: "ANFtW" is a continuation of the quality we've come to expect from them after a brilliant past 3 years of music. It adds some new playfulness to the psychedelic charm of the past albums and is a consistently fun experience to add to their discography

In the stretch between 2016 and '17, the boys over at Psychedelic Porn Crumpets could do no wrong: 2 stellar albums in a row followed by a B-Sides EP that, while not being as great, proved they had a great sense of quality control. The whole "High Visceral" project is nearly 2 hours in running time, and is an extremely rewarding musical experience. This latest release however is a more straightforward (incredibly short) listen and sees the band opting for an almost entirely different sound and atmosphere from that of their previous work.

The record wastes no time diving into its 30-minute runtime, entering with driving guitar distortion with the excellent Keen for Kick Ons". This style of song is pretty common on the album: a more driving feel than the spacey soundstages of "High Visceral". With an interest in creating an audio "carnival", the band make way more light-hearted cuts on this LP with tracks such as Bill's Mandolin opting for a more playful vibe. There are moments on these tracks that do break into the regular psychedelia seen in the last 2 albums however, which really round out the albums' sound.

Speaking of the sound, this album is entirely self-produced, which creates some interesting sounds but also some caveats. At times, the production is very full and well rounded, especially on the songs that really need a full sound to be conveyed properly (looking at you, Native Tongue). However, there are songs that perform a complete one-eighty on this ethos and opt for a more treble-heavy sound. This creates quite the contrast, as half of the album sounds pretty flat, while the other half is full of life and character. While that's not necessarily a bad thing - it does add to the carnival/circus atmosphere they're attempting - it makes for a pretty schizophrenic listen at times. As such, the album's cohesion is so-so: it works incredibly well for the 'driving' tracks, though when one of them wants to transition into a song with a bigger soniscape it sounds a little disjointed. In this sense, the run from Social Candy to When in Rome particularly suffers despite these songs all being fantastic.

As mentioned earlier, the album is painfully short clocking in at 33 minutes - even shorter than Foals' or Hail the Sun's latest releases. Like the production, this has its positives and glaring negatives. The tracks that are designed to be a little more repetitive such as My Friend's a Liquid or Bill's Mandolin do not overstay their welcome whatsoever; they leave their mark and then swiftly exit. Because of this these songs turn out as really excellent ones and they leave ample breathing room for the longer songs which are also absolute treats, Hymn for a Droid and When in Rome being definite highlights and some of my favourite songs of this year. Despite this, the songs that have a little more experimentation to them don't get to develop as much as they perhaps should and the prog-esque song structures seen in "High Visceral" aren't as common. This creates a real sense of wasted potential on the tracks Fields, Woods, Time and Native Tongue. While the former is just an interlude track that could've been developed into something even more beautiful, the latter is a dreamy cut that I could definitely have seen as an Addled Abstraction of Being-type of centrepiece for the album. Fortunately, the material that is already on the song is good enough to not make it a huge pitfall. Following this, Digital Hunger is an entirely new thing for the band: a jazzy instrumental piece with effects pedals and upbeat drums layered throughout. It was a really nice surprise going into this song and it is real hidden gem for the back-end of the album.

While it may seem like all the gripes make the album not worth it, I'm really nitpicking at this point because despite all of the negatives this record is still superb. It combines the big ambiance of "High Visceral" with a new playful sensibility that the band convey very well. It builds with heavy distortion and a pitch-perfect rhythm section until the release of the closer Dezi's Adventure fading in after the end of Digital Hunger, carrying the jazzy drumming with it and adds some organs, keys and more excellent vocals on top. It is a great closer, and perfectly sums up the sound the band wanted to achieve on "And Now For the Whatchamacallit":

"The original concept was to take a 1930's carnival that had been re-imagined for future generations, a collage of Punch and Judy, Carousels and coconut shy's that progresses in musical concepts and travels with the listener"

Overall, Psychedelic Porn Crumpets latest album is a continuation of the quality we've come to expect from them after a brilliant past 3 years of music. Fortunately, it is not more of the same, it creates an entirely new light-hearted atmosphere whilst retaining the spacey charm of the previous albums. While some tracks are not as developed as they perhaps should have been and the runtime is very very short, "And Now For the Whatchamacallit" is a consistently excellent release and once again leaves me very excited to hear whatever they concoct next.


Favourite tracks:
"Hymn for a Droid"
"My Friend's a Liquid"
"When in Rome"
"Digital Hunger"
"Dezi's Adventure"



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Comments:Add a Comment 
sepiaclouds
May 31st 2019


44 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Hopefully this doesn't seemed rushed. I picked up a digital version last night off of Amazon because obviously time zones and stuff, so in the UK this came out a little before midnight and I've been listening through it since. Really great album despite some of my personal gripes with it. I'm quite proud of this review, but if you hate it feel free to tell me why and I'll work on it - I'm always open to criticism

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2019


9614 Comments


These titles, going to have to have a look see

Digging: Gnaw Their Tongues - An Eternity Of Suffering, An Eternity Of Pain

sepiaclouds
May 31st 2019


44 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

lol yeah the Psych rock scene always come up with great song titles and band names

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2019


16144 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good review dude. I think the summary is cut though, you should chop n shorten it quite a bit.



I am planning to check this one this week.

Digging: Fire! Orchestra - Arrival

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2019


24789 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Oh hell yeah nice review I'll be checking this

sepiaclouds
May 31st 2019


44 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I'm glad people like this review because I was starting to doubt my writing re reading this. Album is great, glad you wanna check it out

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2019


16144 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Am I the only one hearing a bit of Motley Crue in the opener?

keza
June 1st 2019


365 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Good review. Absolutely fantastic album. Year end list contender for sure.



Just...a wonderful unit of music.

jmh886
June 1st 2019


2360 Comments


intrigued by the band name alone

keza
June 1st 2019


365 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

It's one of the best band names I've seen period tbh



Also I hear absolutely no motley crue in this personally.... which I'm glad for

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
June 2nd 2019


16144 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

The guy's voice reminds me of Neil's at times drowned in effects.

AsleepInTheBack
June 2nd 2019


5994 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Nice review, hyped for this

Papa Universe
June 2nd 2019


21690 Comments


psychedelic POS crumptes, can't wait to dig into this

Digging: N'Zwaa - Maha Kali

AsleepInTheBack
June 2nd 2019


5994 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Not as good has HV 1 or 2 from a first spin, but still very noice

Conmaniac
Contributing Reviewer
June 2nd 2019


24789 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah agreed Asleep. prob solid 3.5 but dig the sound for sure

AsleepInTheBack
June 3rd 2019


5994 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

getting more of that carnival vibe on subsequent listens



I'd be lying if I said that I wasn't missing the big, fuck-off grooves and energy and verticality of of HV, but I am getting more into the moodier/hazier feel of this one

Pikazilla
June 4th 2019


808 Comments


Yes, I prefer the previous two as well. Not sure what to rate this one at the moment.



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