Psychedelic Breakfast

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Deuce Review

by Jesse Jarnow

Deuce, the second album from Connecticut's Psychedelic Breakfast, is bursting at the edges with youthful energy and big (occasionally cosmic) ideas. Unfortunately, it is also sophomoric, derivative, and heavy-handed. The members of the quartet, especially guitarist Tim Palmieri, are talented musicians. It's just that they have a hard time separating their music from their influences, which include, most prominently, Phish and Frank Zappa (such as the doubled guitar/vocal melody on the chorus to "Buquebus"). Songs -- such as the 13-minute opening "Tribal Funk Affliction -- careen through stylistic and tempo changes before landing momentarily for some harmonized vocals on silly and/or drug-wisdom lyrics. "Dreams of ecstasy in flight/Living them now it is right to/Free your mind and see the light," they sing on "See the Light." Despite all this, the music is strangely infectious. One can't help but feel the joy at the peak of "Beef Barley," knowing that it probably makes their loyal fans froth. The build is both surprising and immature, and neatly characterizes the pleasures of Deuce. The band hasn't quite worked out a complete sense of decorum yet. Eventually, Psychedelic Breakfast will probably shed these still-young hyper-activities for something more patient. In the bargain, these youthful transgressions will be smiled fondly upon as necessary steps toward saying something original and graceful.

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