The year of King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard continues with their fourth album of 2017 – Sketches of Brunswick East. This is a collaboration with psych-rocker pals Mild High Club made while the bands were hanging out for a couple weeks.
It’s a mellower album that their previous release, Murder of the Universe, with a cool jazz fusion sound to the entire thing. “Countdown” is one of the more relaxing tracks in their entire catalogue. “D-Day” has a light sense of menace and even some guitar touches reminiscent of Flying Microtonal Banana. “Tezeta” has a sweet bass lick throughout it and could even be described as “jaunty” while it keeps its trippy touches (and vocals from Murder of the Universe‘s doomed cyborg Hyan-Tumi).
“The Spider and Me” could almost be the theme to a beloved and forgotten 1960’s cartoon. The instrumental “Sketches of Brunswick East II” brings to mind an afternoon spent at a closed and forgotten seaside resort. KGALTW’s front man Stu MacKenzie plays a lovely flute while warped electric piano (perhaps played by a ghost at the aforementioned resort) bounces along next to him. “Dusk to Dawn on Lygon St” is another happy trip, perhaps along a coastal road at sunrise. The bass work on this and the previous track is outstanding, by the way. It roots both songs.
“The Book” is a witty takedown on Bible thumpers and almost has a lounge jazz sound to it. “A Journey to (S)Hell” is a bit nightmarish, but in a way that would make you wake up wondering if what you dreamed was real and not in a way that would wake you up in a pool of sweat. “Rolling Stoned” is another great instrumental that flows out of your speakers in weird curves. “You Can Be Your Silhouette” is a catchy tune about embracing the idea of being a blank slate without the trappings of modern culture, and “Sketches of Brunswick East III” ends the album on a subtle psychedelic note.
Sketches of Brunswick East is a welcome departure from the heaviness of KGATLW’s last there records. Mind you, I love those records, but this foray into lighter, jazzier, trippier fare is a good choice by them. It’s a good choice by you to buy it.
Keep your mind open.
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