ALBUM REVIEW: The Lovely Eggs – I Am Moron (Egg Records)
For the last 14 years Lancaster duo The Lovely Eggs have ploughed their own determinedly DIY furrow. David Blackwell and Holly Ross operate outside the mainstream, managing themselves, booking their own gigs, making their own records, and releasing them on their own label.
Slowly, word of their infectious indie-psych-punk has spread among those who, like the husband and wife duo, are outsiders, to the extent that most of the tour they had arranged to promote this album had sold out.
We’re talking about venues which hold hundreds here, not pub backrooms where you can literally count the crowd, so the guitar and drums-playing pair must be doing something right.
Sadly, the tour has had to be rearranged due to the current coronavirus pandemic, but I’m sure The Lovely Eggs will be back to spread the weird word whenever the world has returned to normal – whatever that means.
Of all the small bands who are suffering hard times right now, – and there are plenty – you’d bet on The Lovely Eggs to be one of those who emerge relatively unscathed. If anyone is equipped to cope with self-isolation it’s them.
I Am Moron is the sixth album of their 14-year career, and its dozen tracks pick up where 2018’s This Is Eggland left off, mixing heavy psych, punk, otherworldy pop and plain old strangeness.
The psychedelic Long Stem Carnations is a typical opener, drawing you in with its spacey intro, but leaving you wondering where they’re going next. It’s followed by You Can Go Now, where Holly recites a list of modern life’s irritants, from salted popcorn and ziplock freshness to Anthea Turner and Colonel Sanders.
If you’re not hooked yet you surely will be by the time you’ve heard brash lead single This Decision, with its fuzzy punk guitar, and the trippy, repetitive You’ve Got the Ball.
Bear Pit sees the Eggs go full-on heavy rock on us, with shards of riffing guitar and distorted vocals, while 24 Eyes is another slice of scuzzed-up punk.
The Mothership offers a welcome change of pace, with Holly’s voice at the centre of a gentle, ethereal track, appealing “I just want to sleep alone”.
Insect Repellent is You Can Go Now part two, but heavier and scuzzier, with more irritants added to the ‘get rid’ list – from Boy George and comfortable shoes to ‘your lifestyle’ and all-inclusive minibreaks.
Good luck trying to decipher the meaning of the insistent The Digital Hair, which is over in little more than a minute, with Holly warning “the vicar’s a snitch, so don’t trust what you tell him,” and “the pigeons eat chicken, from the streets that you’re sick in”.
Latest single Still Second Rate is another rant about modern life, while the closing New Dawn is a comedown tune far removed from most of the oddness you’ve just listened to.
I Am Moron is the sound of a band who are unafraid to be different and doing things very much on their own terms. You can see why more people are falling for their off-kilter charms. 7/10.