Throwing Meatloaf at the Sun

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Jonathan Scott Pressman (aka Butterscott) is a Boston-based four-track genius who for years has been contentedly releasing cassettes full of material to the pop underground faithful. Rev-Ola gives him his first CD release with Throwing Meatloaf at the Sun, and though Butterscott devotees might recognize a lot of it, the album's a perfect introduction for everyone else. Endearingly referential, Pressman infuses Meatloaf with pop sunlight suggestive of the '60s bubblegum movement ("Dubblbubbldandylionluv"), Donovan, Jonathan Richman, and the Acid Gallery's "Dance Around the Maypole" (check out "Blow Pop Sun"). But he's completely on his own plane lyrically ("Well my clothes were old/And I smelled like mold/And I drove a Snapple truck..." from "Mindless Boogie," as well as the delightfully naughty folk reset "Peter, Paul & Manson"). Listening to the skeletal acoustics and double-tracked vocals of "Hampton Beach," "Hung Like a Horse," and especially "Questionnaire," you get the sense that Sebadoh's Lou Barlow heard a few of those early Butterscott tapes. Elsewhere, "Francine" features some scorching psychedelic guitar, a drum machine keeps time behind the "ba-ba-BA-OOH-mau-mau"s of "Jellybean Jungle," Pressman adopts a Zappa-ish sarcasm for the insanely catchy "Hobby Horse," and "America Sundae" -- tinged with castanets and synthesized sitars -- was originally performed by English psych-mood producer Mark Wirtz. The liner notes state plainly that Throwing Meatloaf at the Sun was "recorded on a ridiculously cheap Tascam porta 3 4-track recorder," and it sounds like it. But the album's casual nature or lack of fidelity shouldn't matter, since new Butterscott fans will be humming along to "Bubblegum Man," while the veterans will be happy to have this stuff sticking to disc instead of cassette tape.

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