Nicholas Allbrook. Pure Gardiya. In hyperbole.


This is the music that made me want to write about music.

This is the music that critics wait in lines, so fanboy eager to describe – but which nonchalantly and mischievously gives the lie to the idea of critics being able to describe music. (Do not even try. Do not even try.)

This is the album The Flaming Lips should have made.

I’d like to say this is the album TV Personalities could have made, but… nah. Not spaced-out enough.

So over-the-top. So sensitive and spacious and wound-up.

This is succour. Relief. Sweet and softened and over-the-top and psychedelic and full of gentle rolling grooves and disturbance, from the dude who fronts Pond and once played bass with Tame Impala. There’s probably a King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard connection in there too. It traces disquiet with our shared Australian heritage. Now, if you are from Australia… I can leave it there, right? YOU KNOW what I’m talking about. If not? Then listen. Just fucking listen. Any similarities (that you will not hear) may be deliberate.

The butcher, the barber, the undertaker
Our land is girt by sea
The looker, the quaker, the cocktail shaker
Something young and free

As I said back then:

It’s tempting to think of Pond as the more unruly, dorky, incestuous lovers of Tame Impala – not for them their concerns about hitting the same note twice or strait-jacketing their songs into recognisable structures.

As I said back then:

My nine-year-old played a magic trick on me this morning. He asked me to think of a four-digit number and tell it to him. He then wrote down a number on a sealed piece of paper and asked me to tell him three more. He then (without doing any calculations) wrote down another number and asked me to open the sealed paper. On it was the number he’d written down.

Two days ago, my five-year-old told me a great visual joke. “Here’s Froggy [lays hand flat]. Froggy can swim [moves hand down] Froggy can fly [moves hand up] Froggy can walk [moves hand along]. Give a hand of applause to Froggy [claps hands together] … Oh! Froggy dead!”

As I said back then:

I totally got called out on this.

As I said back then. As I said back then. As I said back then. Oh shut up, dotard.

Just listen. This one wears a mighty big bruise on its sleeve to The Velvet Underground, but we all wear a mighty big bruise on our sleeves.

Just listen. That’s the sound of my mind gently dislocating itself and sailing away with the lights on Sunderland Bridge, down over the rolling pastures and verdant meadows, down past the whiskey bottles full of bad luck stories and failed memories, soaring out through the clouds with Jonathan Livingstone Seagull, dipping and weaving and gliding, back through the closed shutters taking a nod and a peek at Mrs Darling’s unkissable lips and eventually coming to rest, just for a second, in the steaming bowl of hot water, cooled and impotent. This is the sound of magic, real magic, magic you can touch… hear or touch, it means little to me. This is Allbrook’s second solo album and I shudder to think how much great music is still out there unbidden, hidden from view in plain sight, hidden because of the passage of time, hidden. This is from Perth, and makes me want to move there tomorrow. This is from Perth, and I have only the vaguest impressions of the place but I would still lose my heart for you. This is irritation and golden delight and the stuff of the tomorrows Donald Trump can never imagine.

This is poetry in motion. Strange rhythmical music (except when it’s not).

This is Pure Gardiya.

It only came out nine months ago. Next week, I am going to get round to reviewing that second Nirvana album.

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