Something Now

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Psychedelic is the mantra here on this very cool recording by Boston area band Wayoutz, from the glorious eight-page photo booklet drenched in pastels to the 16 selections of explosively fun garage rock. Scott Damgaard's "Galaxies Away" is the longest song at seven-plus minutes, and is one of the CD's highlights with its pop aggression and spacy sounds. The beauty of this collection is that these clever guys are never redundant, and the material comes off with a freshness and an "I don't care" attitude that is the opposite of what is really going on. The fact that they do care is displayed by their in-tune backing vocals, Lenny Scoletta's solid early-Charlie Watts' drumbeat, and their ability to take a topic that seems unbelievably silly, as Rich Mirsky does on "Donuts R Life," and make it work. It's quite a bit of material to tackle in one setting and keep the listener's attention, but as they shift alternative rock genres from sunshine to British pop, the music here keeps reinventing itself. The smart guitar riff of bassist Tom Abbott's "Clover" is a contrast to the driving cover of Lennon and McCartney's "And Your Bird Can Sing," while his "Path of Wire" sounds like a second cousin to Patti Smith's "Dancing Barefoot." With bubbling precision they somehow keep the fun quotient up, "Memories of the Future" another science-fiction epic from Damgaard, again injecting that happy-cosmic element back into the mix. There's a hidden bonus tune not listed in the tracking on the CD, Tom Abbott's "Drag Race in Outta Space" in MP3 format, and also a CD-ROM portion that includes photos, lyrics, bios, and related items. Something Now is an ambitious project that is light years beyond what many Boston bands were releasing at the end of the 1990s, and is highly recommended.

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