I have a Friday morning habit of looking at Spotify and seeing what new releases are out. And this morning, to my surprise, I notice the new Brian Jonestown Massacre album listed. Their album Something Else was supposed to be released on the first of June from what I read online, but here it is, now sitting in my Spotify library next to Parquet Courts and Shawn Mendes. I’m not complaining, I’m keen as fuck.
By 2:00pm I’ve listened to the album thrice. It’s a tight forty minutes of psychedelic bliss. Front man Anton Newcombe is the personification of a rock star; a dying breed in the ever-changing landscape of pop and hip-hop. Taking inspiration from his early albums, which took inspiration from the swinging sixties and the almighty seventies, Newcombe and Co have successfully recreated the sound of yesteryear; the sound that they redefined in the 90s. Hollow organs hold chords and the tambourine shakes back and forth as Newcombe’s simple guitar riffs repeat endlessly, completely mesmerising me. Early rock music was simple, and at the base of The Brian Jonestown Massacre’s music is simplicity. Simple melodies, simple chords and simple harmonies layered upon each other to create euphoric, hypnotising psych rock. There never really was anyone quite like Newcombe and his band, and there still isn’t.
Something Else doesn’t redefine Jonestown. Newcombe knows what works, he’s fucking good at it, and he doesn’t change it. It’s nice to hear new Jonestown music, if only for forty minutes.