Crayola Lectern - Happy Endings - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Crayola Lectern - Happy Endings

by Ljubinko Zivkovic Rating:9 Release Date:2018-05-25
Crayola Lectern - Happy Endings
Crayola Lectern - Happy Endings

It seems that with Happy Endings, Crayola Lectern, or basically Chris Anderson and his five cohorts have come up with something that can be listed as an archetypal English psychedelic album. Taking the queues from as far back as Syd Barret and Robert Wyatt (as early as his Soft Machine days) with pitstops at Roy Wood, Neil Innes and Robyn Hitchcock, Anderson has come up with a musical/lyrical creation that is all of the above and everything else in between.

While he’s been around the music scene since the start of the century, Anderson has not been exactly the most prolific man. This is only his second album (with the first one, “The Rise And Fall Of…” being released only in 2013), but it seems that he was not wasting his time and that he spent it really structuring his music to a minute detail. Massed horns (and a kazoo in between) on “Rescue Mission”, intricate harmonies (“Lingeron” and elsewhere), Wyatt-like melody changes, including classical piano and vaudeville (“Barbara’s Persecution Complex”), all combined flawlessly.

And then there’s that English ‘psych whimsy’, with a Hitchcock touch of weird and a bit of the macabre, where the album title, Happy Endings, deals exactly with that, making endings, including that of a life, happy. Maybe the wedding picture of his grandmother on the cover has something to do with that too?

Anderson’s musical constructions here stick to what you can call the standard pop song format, but throughout he stretches his musical imagination (Giant Moon in The Sky”) without ever making that cross into the ‘dreaded’ progressive territory, while at times he does get close (“Lux”) without losing his musical focus.

What we do get is a complex, intricate music that covers the psychedelic territory in full, skilfully evading all the pitfalls that it could have dropped in along the way. It is one of those musical affairs that lets you discover yet another minute detail every time you take a listen, and it certainly demands repeated listens.

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