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A. R. Pinewood

No Life (Lost Map)

By • Jul 10th, 2020 • Category: Album review

Oh my goodness, lockdown has done some weird things to people… (although BM suspects this was plotted sometime beforehand)…

Lost Map have found a country music singing robot, you just plug it in and wait for the twanging… like a cross between Max Headroom and ‘Trans’-era Neil Young, well from the first song anyway. After extensive research BM can exclusively reveal (ok so this cat has been out of the bag for a while) that Pinewood is an alter ego of Adam from Randolph’s Leap, moonlighting with moonshine as they do up country.

Actually that vocoder/autotune schtick is very effective and on track one ‘No Life’ he sounds a bit like John Grant and it’s rather good.

After a more conventionally sung ‘Publicly Shamed’ we get more vocal treatment in ‘Faux Misery’ – it is by turns hilarious and strangely moving… Adam also uses the opportunity to up the funkiness a couple of gears – really good!

‘Best Self’ gets a bit wibbly with the vocal effects – have to say, LOL! But the idea of one man battling against machines to get a wrist-slitting country ballad out the door is fucking hilarious anyway….

‘I’m Okay’ has a similar vibe, while ‘Other Side’ ramps things up into a vocally challenged hoedown with a distinctive tinge of ‘La Bamba’.

‘Where Did You Go’ raids familiar country/blues tropes whilst ‘Hyperbolic’ takes things more slowly for another downbeat and mordant tale of depressed country folk…

‘Hotel’ sounds like some kind of Eagles tribute set in an Inverness-shire B&B – probably would drive most reasonable people to excessive drinking and thinking of ending it all…

And last track ‘Write Home About’ sees our protagonist finally having a bit of fun, even if it is at his own expense….

So thanks Adam for righteously putting the C and three stars back into country music – a weird and wonderful record, hope we can hear A.R. and his travellin’ band real soon, y’all… etc.

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