Tuesday, January 21, 2014
Paul Messis on State Records
Paul Messis is back at it again and I was stupidly delaying putting this one on to really find the time to take it in. We've been emailing back and forth since my last review and I'm shocked his output hasn't found a larger audience over here but especially in his own backyard. Growing up, reading NME, the UK always seemed way ahead of the US top 40 curve in so many ways. Times have changed but Paul's amazing nostalgic garage sounds thankfully have not and this is another essential single from this underground one man show.
A-Side's "Time Will Tell" - is just great as previously covered "Lost and Found" with jangle, high treble electric ringing in over tight snare fills which Paul himself is completely responsible for. I can't help but compare him to Jacco Gardner or The Resonars in his incredibly precise solo songwriting. Higher fi than his other single but I can hear him dabbling with whatever fidelity he comes across by design or necessity, these are just perfect songs irregardless. Poppy bass lines and slight reverb on a booming low end tom is a nod to those garage sounds so completely it could easily be mistaken for original work from the period in the best way. I'm constantly in awe asking how he got to this place, what kind of dedication it must take to end up with this kind of perfection. It's an Ariel Pink level of devotion to this time and space contained in the tracks. Paul's so completely obsessed with this era and has managed to reproduce it and even follow this line of thought into today with the same perfectly crafted garage bubblegum romanticism of that very era.
B-Side's "When You Pass Me By" has a rougher guitar sound that's more burly with a faster jangle and a bigger built in distance in the recording this wall of sound has been pushed back with more echo. Paul just transports so completely these tracks it's becoming the most impressive thing I've heard in a long time. 13'oclock records says they're putting out another one of his singles this year and I'm already looking for it to end up in the short stack of singles to remember in December of 2014. More vocal messing around here, the backup support harmonies and vocals are swirling behind the up front direct sound. There's hardly any looseness to his sound, nothing you can point to that gives away a home recorded feel. There isn't a note out of place and I'm not only blown away by the accuracy of this but that he's done it entirely himself. Move over everyone on Trouble in Mind, make some room for this one man psych garage show, Paul Messis who's going to be joining your ranks.
Is that a twelve string on the sleeve there? That must be his secret weapon, he looks young too so there'll be lots more to come from this solo genius.
Pick this up direct from State Records or 13 O'clock here in the US.