CD: The Aliens, Luna

(Pet Rock)

Bobby's Song, which opens the second album from Beta Band survivors the Aliens, contains within its 10-minute span spiralling organ, wibbling synths, Abbey Road harmonies, backwards loops, and a crazed sea shanty. The effect is not so much of fearless adventurers charting music's outer limits than Homer Simpson scoffing hallucinogens. Most of the Aliens' freak-out tropes were minted 40 years ago, right down to Gordon Anderson's persistent habit of mimicking original acid casualty Syd Barrett. It's enjoyable in a rambling, frazzled way, but Anderson gets lost behind all these masks until the last two songs. Boats, which sounds like the sun rising over Laurel Canyon after a heavy night, and the battered, beautiful Blue Mantle make a moving finale to an otherwise frustrating record.


Dorian Lynskey

The GuardianTramp

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