Midwestern London exile’s 6th album is an eclectic and charming jaunt into 1960’s Beat Pop
Piney Gir is hard to pigeonhole. This is down to her chameleon like attitude to music. As Piney eloquently puts it “If you appreciate many types of music, why only limit yourself to one thing all the time?” New album Mr Hyde’s Wild Ride is twelve perfectly crafted slices indie-pop, but they are underpinned pop, psychedelia, country, kraut rock, folk, electro, with fuzzed out guitars and a smile on her face.
Golden Rules opens with an angelic choir that is met head-on by chugging guitars and infectious fuzzy riffs. Piney’s warm and welcoming vocals deliver something that is part nursery rhyme/part life lesson “It’s not a question of time, it’s just the way that it goes. All that glitters is not gold” she sings. Golden Rules sets up the album perfectly. This is exactly what you’re going to get. However if you listen closely you realise that the songs are linked around a heroine and her loves and losses. Tilt a Whirl sounds like fairground music produced by Joe Meek. Ugly Bones feels like an updated Southern waltz, but with more melancholy levels at an album high. The album closes with a repirse of Golden Rules, with its swirling guitars and violin gives Mr Hyde’s Wild Ride a fitting end.
There is a retro cool vibe that permeates every track. This is in part down to it being recorded in Stereolab’s studio. You can almost imagine Piney and the band decked out in the finest 1960’s garb, playing authentic instruments of the time and the takes are immediately pressed on to 7” singles and the play backed on a Dansette.
The real star of the album is Piney and her delicious vocals. They are the equitant of an ice cold lemonade after a swim on a hot day. Juxtaposed with the music, you feel quenched, but at the same time you feel greedy and want more. As will all twee indie, it does begin to grate due to lack of variety, and like too much lemonade it begins to hurt your teeth and head, but these feelings don’t last long and then you’re back enjoying the album. Mr Hyde’s Wild Ride has been released at the perfect time, Summer is here and this is the perfect soundtrack.