Head Moloch Lucas Fitzsimons’s mission statement is to ‘take the past apart, not recreate it’.
Accordingly this second long-player (following 2013’s Forgetter Blues) from Los Angeles miscreants The Molochs (with Ryan Foster) (re)examines the hallowed, sanctified and perennially excavated ‘60s to 90s’ epoch in style.
Named for a God of child sacrifice who then proceeds to di/ingest said infants as dessert (he’s (always a he) also suitably cast in Milton’s Paradise Lost and Ginsberg’s Howl) this Super-Cali-Ritualistic-Esoteric-docious pair play for redemption, praying for (radio) time.
Eleven songs detailing romantique woes and lows, outlining affairs of the heart aching/art-making kind that comprise an expert dis/reassembling and de/restructuring: the end product a kaleidoscopic bricolage-homage, a patchwork-panorama of electric-eclecticism.
With (s)influences varying from Richard Hellish ‘blank generation’ apathy on ‘New York’ to the Prefab Four’s Monkeeing about bonhomie (sem)antics which are all over ‘No Control’. The Byrdsian jingle-jangle ‘The one I love’ enlists you for the eight miles high club.
Spiralling organotronics permeate ‘Ten Thousand’ a Dan Sartainesque fable in its ramshackle and reedy hyper-rockin’ and rollin’. The a-Syd (Barrett) whimsury-rhymery of ‘Charlie’s Lips’ is a disaffected drawling death-disc(o), does our man wish to BE Charlie or does he pity him? As the titular Chuck ‘sharks the passers-by …’ the song comes across as a kin-sing-ship with Jonathan Richman’s perma-stoned ‘Hippy Johnny’. Fitzsimons’s mocking delivery leaving us in the dark.
Those Satanic Majesties themselves the Rolling Stones are summonsed doubly on the sneering country-honking ‘That’s the trouble with you’ and the happy-sad ‘You and me (with its nod to ‘I’m free’) both paeans to escape: freedom in both the spiritual and physical realms.
‘Little Stars’ has energy-echoes of den of iniquity anthem ‘House of the rising sun’, a dark undertow underpins this autobiographical(?) narration, his portentous story-selling depicting a hellish day in the strife that doubles as a warning to you and me. Take heed.
‘No more cryin’ oozes woozy-bluesy harmonica, the lyrics deadpan and drawled/doled out with the end-product like Television covering ‘19th Nervous Breakdown’.
This is not simply a case of analogue archive exhuming, these Bohemian Groovers have delivered 11 skull and boneshakers; the City of Angels has some new demons to kneel at the alt-altar for. Proffer your lambs.
As the saying goes: if you can remember the 60s … then you’re in your 60s.