The Jigsaw Seen

Perfformiad I Mewn Cymru

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In April of 2001, the Jigsaw Seen's co-founders, Jonathan Lea and Dennis Davison, traveled across the Atlantic Ocean to perform two weeks' worth of acoustic shows in several cities in Great Britain (stopping off in Leeds, London, Wolverhampton, York, and Swansea and Cardiff, Wales). There were eight performances altogether, including a BBC Wales radio session; the sessions from their show at the Coal Exchange in Cardiff and the Patti Pavillion provided the sources for this EP. The duo performed a variety of songs from their extensive back catalog; these were later issued as a numbered, limited-edition, six-song live EP (enclosed with a "parking pass" for the BBC studios) entitled Perfformiad I Mewn Cymru (Performance in Wales). The EP was issued in August 2001 on the band's own Vibro-Phonic label. It begins -- after a smattering of polite applause and no introduction -- with several tracks from the band's Zenith album. The leadoff track, "Fiddlesticks,"sets the EP's mostly somber tone with a jangling acoustic guitar, Lea's E-Bowed guitar and Davison's plaintive vocals. His unadorned, unembellished vocals have long been one of this L.A. band's key elements; here, they're up front and center, well-miked and given the mostly acoustic presentation, stripped bare to the bone. "Letter to the Editor" finds the vitriol turned up a notch ("You're more than nothing, but less than something/Your days are numbered but no one's counting you out"). Two more caustic psych-folk numbers follow: "You Mind Is Like Mine" sounds directly influenced by Arthur Lee, circa 1966 or 1967, during his Love heyday, as does the next track, "I'm With You." The Pretty Things' heartbreaking "Loneliest Person" is the only cover here, from their S.F. Sorrow album. The EP ends with one of the Jigsaw Seen's oldest songs, "My Name Is Tom," which had originally been released ten years earlier. This "just for our fans" release is highly recommended if you're already familiar with the band's studio recordings.

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