Miracle Parade - Hark! ...And Other Lost Transmissions (Little Record Company)
There’s a lot to like in these 11 songs that vary in pace, space and time. It’s a slow starting album, with the opener "Lost At Sea" unfurling gradually, a quite mesmerizing effect, as it slowly uncoils amongst the waves of sound it creates. The pace picks up with "Sweet Tooth", and the mood shifts to a more buoyant one. Although "Son Son" has little to offer, "Regarding The Haunting At 16 Fairfield" is an acoustic delight (as is the title). The fifth track, "The Dying Physicist", thrusts the listener in amongst the hurly burly after the gentle 30-second opening, as if you’ve come within range of heavy canon. With the almost hoarse delivery of Christopher Pappas racking up the emotion, you’re almost singing along to the urgent words, willing the anthemic chords on. It’s a song that glows brightly, making it very hard to resist.
The songs really are a varied mixture of brittle words and sparky instrumentation, almost all the creation of the aforementioned Mr. Pappas, who is Miracle Parade in its entirety. Neil Young, The Byrds and Judee Sill are quoted as his influences, but I don't know about that. I found listening similar to a trip to the fairground, and choosing to hang around the outer limits whilst you take in all of the attractions, one by one. I didn't much note if any of the tracks reminded me of another artist. On “Hark! ...And Other Lost Transmissions”, Pappas has done the job right. Full stop. That's it, there’s no need to say anymore.