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coverpic flag Wales - Full Moon 63 - 11/30/01

Gorky's Zygotic Mynci
How I Long To Feel That Summer In My Heart
Mantra Records

I ordered this record the very same day as the first snowflakes were dancing in the air above Oslo. How appropriate! It's the first album I've bought on LP for a very long time, which seems really suitable too.

Gorky's Zygotic Mynci is Welsh for Dimwit Reproductive Monkey, let's just call'em Gorky's hereafter, shall we? I've considered Gorky's a young and promising band for several years. The members started playing together at a tender age way back in the 80s. The debut mini 10 inch album Patio was released in 1992 followed by a couple more albums and a handful of singles and EPs of home-made, let's say progressive or eccentric pop on the local independent Ankst label. Charming songs with not-yer-average time signatures, sometimes influenced by the so-called Canterbury scene (early Soft Machine, Caravan, Matching Mole, Hatfield & The North...). Later Gorky's was picked up by the big industry, released two albums on the Fontana label, but was probably dropped due to lack of commercial success. In 1999 Gorky's moved to Mantra Records which is more of an independent company, I guess, though How I Long... has received more widespread distribution and heavier marketing than the preceding two albums. I saw Gorky's as the support act for Spiritualized on the Ladies And Gentlemen... tour (see interview with the latter in last moons menu) in 1997. They still seemed unashamed young and innocent at that time (and were shamefully treated by spaceman Pierce's light and sound people; even more so than the average support band).

How I long... was released in September but grows more indispensable as the days gets shorter and colder. Whereas last year's mini album The Blue Trees was fairly acoustic and roots oriented, How I Long... is back on the pop trial, comparable to Barafundle (1997) and Gorky 5 (1998), only simpler and calmer. (Haven't heard Spanish Dance Troupe, of 1999, yet.) The delicate arrangements combine a host of acoustic instruments with the electric and electronic kind. The violin of Megan Childs gives some of the songs a slightly folk and roots feel. Three of the songs are even orchestrated with several string or wind instruments. The vocals throughout are as low-voiced as ever. Lead vocalists Megan, big brother Euros Childs and Richard James seem more shy than laid-back. Which really suits these songs.

Apart from the unusual happy-go-lucky Her Hair Hangs Long with the chorus: "Oh how lucky I am", the high hopes of Honeymoon With You and the hopelessly not so easy Easy Love, the lyrics are about longing for a lost summer or a lost (summer?) lover. All the lyrics are in English this time, no native language; they hardly need any big words, capital letters or complex melody lines. At first most of the melodies and lyrics seemed too simple and straightforward. Where Does Yer Go Now? and How I Long... were the first songs to stand out: classic Gorky's stuff. After some more spinning the others followed. All in all the 12 songs of How I Long To Feel That Summer In My Heart might not be Gorky's finest collection thus far, but the arrangements throughout are stronger than ever and give them extra dimensions. And the album will certainly be a necessary means to bear what seems like a godforsaken winter at the moment. Anyhow: "Seasons come and they may go, Promise me our love isn't so."

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