The Death of Pop team up with The Blog That Celebrates Itself for its Boo Radley compilation
The Boo Radley’s are one of my favourite bands. EVER! There was some whimsical that set them apart from other bands when I was growing up. However, like a lot of people, my first introduction to the band was Wake Up Boo. You know that song with the happy guitars and bouncy rhythm and catchy chorus, that is actually, well, bleak? When I first heard it I liked it, but wasn’t sold. However I must have liked it enough to ask for the album as a birthday present. To judge the album by that single is to judge the England team because Francis Jeffers played for them once. Just below the surface Wake Up brims and bubbles with psych ideas and inventive word play. Soon I had all their albums and I realise how important they are.
Now let’s fast forward about 15 years. The Blog That Celebrates Itself has commissioned an album full of Boo’s covers called We Are All BOO´s. Covering the bands career from their debut 1990 Ichabod and I up until their flawless 1993 shoegazing epic Giant Steps. As expected the bands in included on this comp are the crème de la crème of the current indie/shoegazing from across the globe. Duelectrum rub shoulders with Heaven while Jett Brando have a nice chat with Stella Diana about delay pedals.
The stand out track on the album is The Death of Pop’s take on Memory Babe. The original is a fast paced woozy shoegazing affair, with flourishes of psych. The middle 8 whips around you like Willo-o’-the-wisp and the face melting severity of the guitars on the chorus proves that punk wasn’t for nothing. The Death of Pop’s version however feels like a totally different beast. Opening with warm acoustic guitars and crisp vocal harmonies. There is a slight holiday feeling to it. Whilst listening to Memory Babe, you can almost imagine yourself on a patio or veranda watching the last rays of the sun set while you are serenaded by local musicians that is until the outro kicks in a gentle maelstroms of psych guitars engulf your ears. The beauty of this track is that it strips away all the noise and confusion of the original, but what we are left with is pure heart felt emotion. It’s the most striking track on the comp as instead of trying to out delay/drone/muscle the original songs, The Death of Pop have tapped into what it’s about and executed something that delivered on all levels.
The only real downside is there wasn’t more tracks from their underrated debut Ichabod and I, or non-album tracks I Want a Rainbow Nation and Sunfly, but this, in all fairness, is petty nit-picking on my behalf, as the actual songs covered showcase the bands depth and diversity. If you are expecting to find covers of Wake Up Boo, Find the Answer Within and Ride the Tiger, this isn’t the album for you. However if you want to hear reinterpretations of their early shoegazing, noise-pop material then this comp will find a very happy home on your harddrive and a very lazy day you will have!
The full tracklisting is:
- Duelectrum-Lazy Day
- The City Gates-Towards the Light
- Did You Die-The Finest Kiss
- Lava Divers-Does this Hurt
- Stella Diana-Lazarus
- Seven Tin Stars-Barney (…and Me)
- Juvenile Juvenile-Wish I Was Skinny
- Jeff Brando-Spaniard
- The Death of Pop-Memory Babe
- 93MillionMilesFromTheSun-Foster’s Van