Monday, January 28, 2008

Bolts of Lysergic Acid-Guided Melody

I'm listening to Adam Franklin's solo album Bolts of Melody a lot lately. I should have mentioned it (and the Soulsavers album with Mark Lanegan) on my list of good records from 2007.

Most of the record is surprisingly mellow, and Adam reveals himself as a sensitive rhythm player with a solid singing voice. He plays like the shoegazer guitar god of his Swervedriver days on a few tracks, like the backwards solo that ends "Shining Somewhere".

As I listen to Bolts of Melody, I can't help playing Spot the Influence. "Song of Solomon" sounds remarkably like an Elliott Smith song, but most of the touchstones are classic album rock. I'm frequently reminded of the dreamy Jimi Hendrix ballad "Drifting".

It isn't outright plagiarism, but to these ears Adam Franklin's "Theme from LSD" sounds suspiciously similar to "Nova Feedback", an instrumental in three-quarter time from Chrome's second album, Alien Soundtracks. Maybe Adam was inspired by Helios Creed, one of the great acid-fried rock guitarists. See what you think:

Adam Franklin: Theme from LSD (buy Bolts of Melody)
Chrome: Nova Feedback (edit) (buy Alien Soundtracks)


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