One of the most
unique and oddball individuals to ever grace a stage, Lawrence (no last name,
folks) formed the incredibly influential band Felt in the early ‘80s and while
the band never received the commercial acclaim that they should have, everyone
from Morrissey to Stuart Murdoch considered themselves to be either a fan of
the band (Mozzer) or was influenced by them (Murdoch). After dissolving Felt, Lawrence formed Denim in
the ‘90s, another step in a different direction and now, his latest incarnation,
Go-Kart Mozart. Both Denim and GKM were/are a unique mix of cheeky pop, glam
rock , oddball synth pop, silly almost children’s stuff (that’s not for
children) and miles away from the precious pop of Felt.
Ok, so at times
the guy is nuttier than a fruitcake and no one ever seems to be sure what’s
he’s on about, but for this 17-track collection Lawrence sings, and only sings,
but he’s got a host of friends helping out, including the mysterious K-Tel on
synths, Wurlitzer and ,…tah dah…..the Claptrap!
The songs are hard not to like with chunky guitar riffs, cascading melodies and
one-of-a-kind vocals (lyrics, too). You
want catchy? You got catchy! “West Brom Blues.” “The Sun.” “Blowin’ in a
Secular Breeze.” “Synth Wizard,” with some glammy guitar. “Electrosex.” And a
few others (don’t miss the 29-second “Robot Rock”).
To the Felt
purists out there who want to dismiss, give G-KM a chance. True, it sounds
nothing like Felt, but Lawrence is a true
visionary, one of the few left, and most of the songs on here are good. Believe it. (Side note: The
release of this record last month followed a UK
tour with special screenings of Paul Kelly’s documentary about the man himself
called Lawrence of Belgravia. Side
note two, O.C.D. alert! On the inside sheet is Lawrence’s
list of books he read and records he listened to while recording the record).
DOWNLOAD: “West Brum Blues,” “The Sun, “Come On
You Lot,” “Blowin’ in a Secular Breeze,”
“Robot Rock,” “Queen of the Scene” TIM HINELY