Graham Reid | | 1 min read
Quite a few bands -- ELO spring to mind -- have built a career around a certain period of Beatles' songs. But after the first couple of songs by White Candles here you might conclude them to be that rarity.
They have built their music around a single song.
The spirit if not the actual sound of Being For The Benefit of Mr Kite (from Sgt Pepper) appears to be the inspiration for White Candles who open with an unsettling whirlygig and mad carnival melange of keyboards, distant and dreamy vocals, and electronic effects.
It is as if the good folks at the BBC Radiophonic Workshop (those behind the original Dr Who theme) have dropped acid and listened to Sgt Pepper on the headphones.
And this six-song 24 minute outing is a headphone album, which isn't all Mr Kite Revisited.
White Candles -- about whom I know nothing and doubt their amusing bio here -- slice off a little early Seventies electronic/Moog-styled pop (the bouncy but slight Astral Projections), some kitschy soundtrack stuff from the late Sixties (Altar Hexes might have come from some mad Matt Helm psychedelic parody) and if Austin Powers needs something for his next encounter in space with Dr Evil then Behold! The Abstract Eye might slot right into the background in a weird dream sequence.
The understated extra track Shunga is really spacey and kinda cool.
White Candles don't strike me as especially interesting at this stage (and that bio suggests they/he/she might not be in for the long haul in this incarnation anyway) but those two swirly openers have an undeniably enjoyable if disconcerting effect.
This album is available through Active Listener's bandcamp page here for free streaming or US$5 (or more).
For more on the Active Listener and its psychedelic releases see this interview with Nathan Ford, the brains and enthusiasm behind it.