Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Paul Messis "Lost and Found" on 13 O'Clock Records
This sleeve from Paul Messis Reminds me of another garage legend, Jay Reatard. I had heard tales of this mentally impaired garage punk so when I finally spotted that green printed inner sleeve single on the wall at Academy of Jay wearing sunglasses with AN ACOUSTIC GUITAR leaning against a wall, it seemed like the perfect introduction to see what this guy was all about. I mean was that him was all bloody in his underwear on the cover of Blood Visions for god sakes? Was it some kind of terrifying death metal? Outsider escaped mental patient punk? This doesn't look so menacing, just a guy hanging out playing some tunes for the rats in the alley.
You'll notice that Mr. Messis took a similar approach to letting the simplicity of a printed inner 45 sleeve speak for itself. He also chose to pose with a guitar nonthreateningly hanging out in a tree, equally as timeless as the Jay cover. But there's still a few questions before this even hits the turntable...is this a reissue? ...and more importantly is that a twelve string electric? Little did I know Paul recorded the most authentic recreation of that late '60s garage sound that had me double checking the year on this.
A-Side's "Lost and Found" I can't get over this sound... the liner notes say 'recorded in 2009' but I just can't believe it, the texture has that AM radio quality of jangle psych that is freaking perfect. The layers of woven guitar, shimmery treble and the vocal just under the surface, in that unassuming style of somehting like The Zombies or the Flowers record from the stones. He's not quite sure what it means to be any kind of rock star yet. You better get in on this kind of talent before he gets a HUGE head. I'm surprised Trouble in Mind hasn't managed to track this guy down yet, maybe they thought this was a reissue too. Paul played all of this? It's amazing to hear something so exactly referencing those sounds and writing something entirely new. A specific vision like this is completely incredible, like that kid raised to speak klingon, it's the only thing he knows. Thawed out, a perfectly intact specimen picking up pop psych and classic garage right before it all turned to disco and punk. Where the hell does he get off, sitting in that tree with his guitar? Get back into the studio!
B-Side's "I Gotta Go" is a time machine with more bouncy treble strummed lines, muffled by reverb. A hammond of Farfisa with layers of his backup vocal, the mix is almost the most important element here, you can lay down this kind of chameleon psych perfection but to place it in a fidelity like this is the master stroke. Snappy tight snare at speed, dropping into pop - 13th floor Elevators have nothing on Paul, this freaking guy knows what he's doing.
Check it out below and be thankful 13 O'Clock records made this available in the states. After this one I'll be looking into his full lengths - that's plural, as in he's got a massive catalog of this stuff.