The Golden Dregs release new single ‘Adaptation’ and unveil details of their debut record ‘Lafayette’, set for release May 25th on Art is Hard Records.
Photo – Jay Harper
The Cornwall town of Falmouth is a place that appears to be disproportionally fertile in its spawning of quirky and often brilliant guitar music, and it is from that very quaint town that The Golden Dregs have emerged- blinking in the sunlight with a poorly rolled cigarette drooping from their mouth.
‘Adaptation’, their latest release on the Art Is Hard label, is a rollicking four-and-a-half minutes of scuzzy and blues-addled art rock that owes much debt to the primitive stomp of the Velvet Underground and overseen by the the lager-swilling ghost of Mark E. Smith, who, I dare say looks on approvingly. Musically, The Golden Dregs offer little more than the sum of their parts with a repertoire of familiar touchstones instantly recognisable to anyone who has delved into the annals of post-punk history.
However, it is in the monotone vocals of Ben Woods where the track is elevated above simple pastiche. Delivered in a half-mumbled drawl reminiscent of a half-cut Lou Reed found conversing with a drug dealer in a Lower East Side alleyway, the lyrics deliver astute, comical and often painfully accurate ruminations upon small town living. Ben clearly possesses a keen gift of noticing the most banal minutiae of social interaction, his razor sharp observations speaking volumes about society itself and the current state of affairs we find ourselves in.
It’s certainly a derivative and scratchy rock n’ roll jaunt but one whose wry and topical observations render ‘Adaptation’ a worthwhile listen.
By George Percival