The Hip Replacement (Hip Rep 020)
here. I'm sure some of my readers remember Nathan from his main band The Soft Hearted Scientists who have released some excellent stuff on Fruits de Mer Records, for example. While The Soft Hearted Scientists have been on a sabbatical Nathan has made some more new music with the aid of some friends. The music is not really that different to his main band, though.
Here we have 16 short and simple songs with usully quite minimal arrangements and instrumentation. As with the Scientists, the main genious of the music is just that: how can something so simple and innocent sound so great and captivating? More is definitely not always more. The overal vibe is sort of melancholic and nostalgic, but in a tasty, interesting way. There are wonderful, emotional baroque pop psych numbers, more folky things and some weirder, experimental moments to be found. One of my favourites is the beautiful and melodic "Side By Side (Glowing Guide)" that is also the album's longest piece at 4:29. Another a bit longer piece is the weird, hypnotic and dark "Carnival of the Damned" that has cool Mellotron and spacey sound effects along with the vocals, percussion, piano, acoustic guitar etc. There are also some primitive electronic beat on the very 80s sounding "St Davids Bed And Breakfast Blackout Disaster" that brings to mind Nathan's FdM label mate Nick Nicely. For example "Song of a Sourpuss" is closer to late 60s / early 70s U.K acid folk. Marvellous. All in all, this is another amazing collection of little, shiny sonic diamonds that deserve to be heard by all psych and folk pop appreciating ears. The album is at the moment available on CD and digital, but a limited vinyl release is imminent as well.