Reverb, reverb, wherefore art thou reverb? That man Shakespeare might well have written these very words had he been pondering beer and loud music instead of the male/female dynamic. Oh, and welcome to “Psychic Action” by German post midnight purveyors of surf rock experimentation, The Vagoos.
An album by The Vagoos is an object lesson in giving people what they would expect of a rock ‘n’ roll revivalist band whilst simultaneously twisting everything out of shape. The songs seem conventional enough, but the mood varies considerably with “Black Sea”, in particular, taking a long, and insistent, march from the beach into a battle with the darkness of the soul. On the other hand, this album is more than long extemporisations and fans of the more conventional revivalist approach of the short, sharp shock variety will find their delight in the robust, near grunge intensity, of “Non Toxic Green Cheap Jelly Boy” or the swirling post punk apocalypse that is “Sewer Surfin’”.
There is something primal yet inherently satisfying to the mind about this album. The Vagoos might be mistaken by many as exorcists of the ghosts of rock ‘n’ roll past yet they are more soothsayers than anything else and are - I hope - forever destined to provide the spiralling soundtrack to our confused times.
Oh Mercutio, speak some more of them soon.
The album is also available on vinyl.