I was introduced to Crystal Jacqueline last year via her first single on Fruits de Mer and her full length Sun Arise album, both of which included an intriguing variety of covers, including tunes by The Troggs, The Rolling Stones, Gordon Lightfoot, and a psychedelic take on Fly A Kite from the Mary Poppins movie that remains a candidate for one of my favorite re-interpretations of all time.
This new double 7″ features Jacqueline partnered with The Honey Pot, who released the excellent To The Edge Of The World album last year. We’ve got a cool cross section of covers here. Pink Floyd’s trippy-spacey-tribal Remember A Day is amped up with a fuller rockin’ Prog-Psych sound. The Honey Pot’s rendition of White Rabbit is a one-two punch knockout, starting off very much like the original, but then about halfway through blasting off into a monster rocker with symphonic keys and ripping guitars. Fleur de Lys’ garage-pop freakout song Tick Tock is given a wah’d dose of funky grooves, which sounds great combined with the stratospheric guitar solos and classic 60s organ. Mighty Baby’s Egyptian Tomb is similarly rocked up and includes more ripping guitar, which sounds fantastic within a bouncy pop-psych grooving context. For Curved Air’s Puppets, Crystal is faithful to the spirit of the original, but injects an orchestral feel that’s both flowing and quirky, and dispenses with the jazzy piano, and in my opinion is overall better than Curved Air. Crystal cranks out a cool rocking cover of The Electric Prunes’ I Had Too Much To Dream. And finally, we’ve got an original, penned by Crystal’s Honey Pot partner Icarus Peel. It’s Raining is a high energy pop-psych rocker with a catchy melody, awesome spaced out guitars, and powerhouse drumming. Nice.
The single will be available late March, and as usual this is vinyl ONLY, no CDs or downloads. If interested you better hurry because Fruits de Mer releases sell out QUICK!
For more information visit the Fruits de Mer Records web site at: http://www.fruitsdemerrecords.com
Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz