Where 2019’s ‘Maladyne Cave’ leant towards progressive folk freakouts and whimsical indie, with bursts of cartoonish aggression, a year later their sound has been hardened. Those meticulous wigged out and playful arrangements are replaced by a post-scuzz depression. Forlorn distortion coats all tones and vocals, soft sounds are swapped out for fuzz filtered riffs, this is a different My Octopus Mind.
Keener, sharper, character driven, there’s a sense of amassed disappointment. The title is a sly kick to self esteem gurus and a nod to my book’s lack of content. Fictitious or not, we are verging on emo with themes of isolation and failure, who’d have thought 2020 with its twist turns and thrills could be a negative hit to the ego?
But this darker intent seems to suit them, ‘Buy My Book‘ is rougher, more streamlined. While loose on first listen, those fears and that panic, they take turns to ramp up between sections. From blunt riffs and loose vocals, to crushed frantic words, to drums that propel the last third of the song with some scattergun tom-work and hats, there’s a craft to this ramshackle track. There’s the lazy grunge slur of the vocals, the agro-psyche kick of King Gizzard and a wry dose of angsty theatrics. It ties into those Mars Volta and Beefheartian tendencies that made up the best of last album, the tracks ‘Mocha Narwhal‘ and ‘Welder‘.
With a video that shows off their penchant for absurdity, a VHS throwback to Young Ones and Jam, I’m reminded of a sketch from the latter. Where to Minnie Riperton’s sickly sweet ‘Lovin’ You‘, in a tree on a lush summer’s day, lovers spank each other with space hoppers. My Octopus Mind are still abstract, anchored in noirish surrealism, but this single is their most direct.
‘Buy My Book‘ is out now, with their upcoming album ‘Faulty At Source’ due in the not too distant future.
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