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KingBathmat - Crowning Glory CD (album) cover



Psychedelic/Space Rock

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4 stars Bathmat songs inhabit an oddly agreeable hinterland between glum-faced modern angst- pop and classic psychedelia - the slightly acidic guitars, in particular, recall those early 90s psych acts you used to read about in Ptolemaic Terrascope or whatever (you did read it, didn't you?), and there's a dreamily twilit feel to many of the songs that sails closer to the likes of The Church & Porcupine tree.

Try "The Final Star", it turns itself inside-out by following a surging verse with a weightless floaty chorus that whips the rug out from under the song, leaving it half-escaping its own gravity. And the fabulous, harpsichord-led "Almost There", with its skittling drums and swooshy effects, is surely the number one song on Skylab. Even when the lysergia's turned down there's fun to be had - "Fair Weather Friend" is pristine folk-rock from the sadly unexplored crossover between Fairport Convention and The Hollies. "The Sun And Moon", on the other hand, kicks off as a dead ringer for non-electro Radiohead, hardly the sort of thing you'd expect from an alleged psych revivalist. Being easily pinned down is clearly not on the Bathmat agenda.

Recording and producing entirely alone, and laughing at the merest thought of managers and promoters (and even record distributors), King Bathmat has a "Good Life"-style self- sufficiency agenda that clearly aims to show that The Industry is perhaps not really all that necessary (don't tell it, it'll cry). But does he enjoy a naturally sellout-free status, or has he been secretly burned before by The Biz and now won't even touch it with yours? His hardline stance is admirable enough, but it would be a tiny tragedy if these songs never reached the audience they deserve. Is King Bathmat cutting off his own nose to spite someone else's face? Find out for yourself at, where you can order this CD. Which you should do.

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Posted Monday, June 6, 2005 | Review Permalink

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