Little Bare Big Bear - "Little Man" b/w "Dr. Morgan's Panacea" (Butterfly Records 2002, BUT-11, 7" 45rpm)
The Gene Drayton Unit - "Due Bottoni" b/w "Juicy Lucy" (Butterfly Records 2002, BUT-15, 7" 45rpm)
The Diplomats Of Solid Sound - "Alligator Boogaloo" (Butterfly Records 2002, BUT-14, 7" 45rpm)
The Lazy Lane - "Sea Witch" (Butterfly Records 2002, BUT-13, 7" 45rpm)
From Aural Innovations #24 (July 2003)
Butterfly Records is a label based in Barcelona, Spain who we've just been introduced to with four 7" 45rpm releases:
Fuzz psych fans step right this way. Little Bare Big Bear is a British quartet whose musical roots are firmly in the dirty cosmic garage. I think this 7" is their only release to date and what a debut it is. There's nothing new here, but boy do they kick ass when it comes to 60's styled tripped out and seriously rocking psychedelia. And there's pop potential here too along with the ripping fuzz guitars, especially on "Dr. Morgan's Panacea", a trip rock song for the altered conscious. Blue Cheer, early Who, and Pretty Things are all reference points, along with countless other classic garage psych bands. I'd love to hear a full length from these guys. Limited to 500 copies. Email Little Bare Big Bear at email@example.com.
When was the last time you thought of a band's music as grooooovy! Well that's exactly what comes to mind listening to The Gene Drayton Unit. Based in the UK, this ensemble plays 60s styled go-go jazz with guitar, bass, drums, and a kick ass combo of sax, Hammond organ and piano. Love it! This is the kind of music you used to hear in 60's flicks with beach dance parties and hip clubs with go-go girls. Absolutely swingin stuff and the b-side, "Juicy Lucy", is full of serious soul. According to their web site the discography to date consists of three 7" releases. This one is limited to 1,000 copies on lime green vinyl. Visit The Gene Drayton Unit at http://www.genedraytonunit.com.
Along similar lines are the Iowa City, Iowa based Diplomats Of Solid Sound. The band claim Booker T and the MGs, The Ventures, The Meters, James Brown, Blaxploitation, and Blue Note Jazz as their influences, though the four instrumentals on this 7" bring to mind Booker T the most. Instrumentation includes guitar, bass, drums, and... Hammond and Rhodes! Yeah! But though this is similar to Gene Drayton, the Diplomats substitute heaping loads of chilled out soul in place of fast paced swing. And there are few things more soulful than a Hammond organ backed by a sympathetic rhythm section. Limited to 500 copies on purple vinyl. Visit The Diplomats Of Solid Sound at http://www.thediplomats.org.
From Pittsburgh, PA, The Lazy Lane's haunting, and sometimes quirky, organ and guitar melodies, along with sultry vocals by Lily Lane, make for a strange mixture of The Doors, Syd-era Pink Floyd, and Goth. I love the spaced out bubbling synth embellishments and darkly carnival-like vibe on "The Girl Upstairs". "Waking Up Buttercup" is probably the trippiest song of the set, with its valium paced psych groove. And "Time Warp" is probably my favorite of the four songs. It begins with a brief launch into space, followed by a drugged acoustic Syd styled folk song. It's an intriguing blend of styles and the songs are pretty good. According to their web site this 7" is their only release to date but they have a full length CD which should be out soon. Limited to 500 copies. Visit The Lazy Lane at http://www.thelazylane.com.
For more information you can visit the Butterfly Records web site at: http://www.butterfly-records.com.
Contact via snail mail c/o Butterfly Records; PO Box 31225-08080; Barcelona; Spain.
Reviewed by Jerry Kranitz