Track three, horror with eyeballs is my favorite on the CD. A layered a capella intro, Johns singing and harmonizing with himself, breaking into a carnival with the sounds of the calliope and tinkling electronic bells. The song makes me think of the Fun House, with all its trick mirrors. Johns sings, “All of this time on my hands, so far has gone to feeding my animals.” Sometimes you have an inner child, and sometimes you have a menagerie. As the song progresses, the carnival falls away in favor of strings and piano and swamp sounds–frogs barking and crickets chirping. Bloody brilliant.
Lifting the veil off the braille is delicate. I had to listen to it a few times before I got it. It just didn’t seem to jam like the rest of them. No lyrics, just whistling and oohs over joyous piano and Paul Mack’s drum machine. It’s a song for those days when you feel like singing, but you can’t find words. Those are great days.
Aaängry megaphone man, track nine pushes Johns’s full range, reminding us that this young man really can sing. Which is important if what you know about Johns is that he was the 16 year old Aussie always on MTV. Johns has grown up, and so has his music. And, Paul Mack is an amazing producer, making this CD seamless experimental pop that musically pushes the boundaries without being ridiculous or pretentious.
This CD is fun, crazy, experimental pop music. Yes.