Wildest Dreams

Wildest Dreams

  • AllMusic Rating
    7
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Packaged in Sasha Tessio's explicit homage to the cover of Randy California's 1972 solo debut Kapt. Kopter and the (Fabulous) Twirly Birds, Wildest Dreams involves Harvey W. Bassett (aka DJ Harvey) supported by three members of Orgone: keyboardist Dan Hastie, bassist Ethan Phillips, and guitarist Sergio Rios. Bassett, who plays guitar, the drums, and sings, wrote and produced it all. It's scuzzier and trippier than Map of Africa, Bassett's mid- to late-2000s alliance with Thomas Bullock. The same can be said of this album's relation to Orgone's output, with most of that group's funk and soul washed out in place of reverberant psych and acid rock, along with the odd diversion into lax boogie-AOR fusion. Seemingly laid down with dreams of traveling back to the early '70s to share a surfer benefit bill with the likes of Spirit and the James Gang -- or maybe to open a Rare Earth label revue -- it's thoroughly footloose and chiefly stream of addled consciousness. Bassett rhapsodizes about a roller skating mermaid, cruising with his baby, stopping for "a half-decent sandwich," and so forth. What feels good floats, even if it sounds silly. The band cooks on pound-and-grind numbers like "Bosh," "Last Ride," and "Yes We Can," the last of which is nothing like the Allen Toussaint composition. There are intermittent passages where they space out, with highlight "Pleasure Swell" -- a showcase for Hastie's twinkling electric piano work -- akin to a murky, tranquil flip of the Doors' "Riders on the Storm." This can be taken as either an emulation or parody of its inspirations...or both. Bassett and his fellow knuckle-dragging stargazers are having far too much fun to care about anyone else's perception.

blue highlight denotes track pick