The Cherry Bluestorms | Whirligig!

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Rock: Madchester Pop: Britpop Moods: Type: Lyrical
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by The Cherry Bluestorms

The definitive musical statement from LA's premiere psych-mod pop group.
Genre: Rock: Madchester
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. She Said She Said
4:37 $0.99
2. Roy Wood
4:17 $0.99
3. Heel to Toe
4:03 $0.99
4. Sleep
4:24 $0.99
5. Rays of the Sun
2:30 $0.99
6. Seven League Boots
3:26 $0.99
7. Purple Heart Magic
2:47 $0.99
8. Brighter Days
3:00 $0.99
9. Out
4:09 $0.99
10. Caroline
3:05 $0.99
11. Each Mortal Day
4:01 $0.99
12. Be Here Now
5:42 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.


Album Notes
"Unlike so many ’60s-style musicians who are content to faintly imitate garage rock and psychedelic pop from the safe distance of a half-century, The Cherry Bluestorms imbue the jangling original songs and inspired covers on Transit of Venus and the inventive song cycle Bad Penny Opera with unrivaled vibrancy and immediacy. Their latest album, Whirligig!, ranges from the string-laden, sun-dappled Laurel Canyon pop grandeur of “Seven League Boots” and the driving mod anthem “Purple Heart Magic” to the ebulliently groovy homage “Roy Wood” and Laughlin’s acoustic folk reverie “Sleep.” A sparkling remake of The Beatles’ “She Said She Said” ranks with The Bluestorms’ sublimely surging 2007 version of “Baby, You’re a Rich Man.” - Falling James, LA Weekly



to write a review

Steve Winnall

LA's choice psychedelic tunesmiths reach new heights
It's not often I say rejoice as we descend through autumn into winter, but praise be for brighter days: it's only the new album from The Cherry Bluestorms! Whispers were of an album of singles...well soft voices can speak the greatest truths. Seeded with the richest of fertilizers, Whirligig! is a collection of super-growers consumable as a basketful of goodness with treats to delight the palate of every power pop fan.

As with these Los Angeles-based Anglophiles' debut album, Transit Of Venus, Whirligig! opens with a Beatles' cover, this occasion She Said She Said. However, our journey could hardly begin more differently. Where Baby You're A Rich Man kicked things off previously with instantaneous brightness, this is the sun rising from slumber through the morning chill, casting rays of atmosphere to illuminate the grand picture in store. This band's far too astute to attempt to out-Beatles The Beatles, their storming version of the Revolver track then crashes into full swing and switches Lancastrian sides for a Manchester-style groove infusion which makes a fine alternative, working very well in contrast with the guessing game tease of the intro. (Almost) immediately the tempo is upped a further gear as we move along to a driving homage to that wizard of versatility Roy Wood, making neat homonymic capital out of the affable Brummie. He wouldn't mind. This fun track had already won me over even before a playful hijacking by Keith Richards, but the added brush strokes of a refined orchestral coda, as if Roy's Dear Elaine finally walked through the door for afternoon tea: now that's what I call Satisfaction! And yes, there's a rare trace of via The Dickies about this TCBs' number.

One of the most appealing qualities of TCBs is the vacillating yin and yang vocal harmony between band leaders Glen Laughlin and Deborah Gee. Heel To Toe is the first reminder of just how well they work together, as surefooted on circular patterns they switch to rolling mellower territory. Further still, Sleep is a tender acoustic lullaby in contemplation of a lady love. We can probably guess...Through the peaceful strumming an echo of The Hollies' King Midas In Reverse rises from the subconscious, afore sucked by backwards guitar and over the edge we drift off blissfully into a Scotch mist of uilleann pipes.

Following Sleep how better awakening than to the chiming Rays Of The Sun?, which sparkles early Byrdsy like the morning dew. Short and sweet of harmony, it features almost military style drumming from Mark Francis White. Seven League Boots is a string-borne melodic highlight and radio friendly as they come. Something like a mash-up of Sympathy For The Devil and Love Is All Around, it's a fairy tale trope so familiar yet as fresh as a West Coast breeze, and you'll be singing along on it. Long looked forward to on CD, live favourite Purple Heart Magic nicks the toe-tapper in-chief award, before Brighter Days recalls The Charlatans in acoustic mode and rallies with resolute optimism against just a tinge of sonic foreboding. Clever.

Out is an urgent, crunchy, number bestowed with a serving of Hammond organ that would do Brian Auger proud. The vulnerable timbre in Deborah's vocal lead conveys the claustrophobia with effectiveness. Soothing things down then enters the gentle Caroline with a lovelorn quality direct from the Summer of Love. A personal highlight, helpless in the presence of such gorgeousness I'm drawn to visualize a hazy subject as beautiful as the wildflower meadow through which she rambles. A heavenly Wurlitzer break seals the dream. Then, as the hour of the Whirligig begins to grow long, Each Mortal Day captures the inherent sadness of life with a bittersweet beauty that is very moving, quite lovely and just perfect. From this peak, having started playing The Beatles it is fitting with the Liverpudlian Goliaths at the very taproot of The Cherry Bluestorms' DNA that the album ends up all Beatlesey. Building classically from simple electric piano, Be Here Now is a rallying call of lament and redemption in the anthemic vein of Start Again, the lighters-in-the-air moment which false-ended their last opus Bad Penny Opera. Regretting the future's betrayal of peace and love generation ideals, it's a finale which crystallizes the sense of loss lurking beneath the surface throughout the album. In an era where one can rarely enter a store, bar or even a festival free from the aural sludge of ghastly processed fodder, a cry to step back from mammon and 'listen to the music of the guitars' never sounded more of a balm. As it all comes to a head Laughlin lets loose and those guitars in crescendo do howl their protest. It's in no way too much.

Hearts and inspiration as ever in the decade that swung, with a dust-resistant vital spark The Cherry Bluestorms have distilled and delivered their best yet. Where the bland, vacuous and plain crass have shoved the world as it should be to the margins, the blessing of sanctuary that this band brings is ripe for its widest circle of appreciation.