'They are Walrus Goo goo g joob!' The name of this Halifax Nova Scotia group is an immediate giveaway concerning the prime inspiration for the content of Family Hangover, their album from earlier this year. A cursory listen, (strangely, after the first two tracks which sound like something else), will tell you they clearly view the world mainly through the lenses of John Lennon's granny glasses during his psychedelic phase from '66 to '68. A very nice place to be, although Walrus paint themselves into a corner on occasions on this generally fine record due to their clear almost all-encompassing devotion to the vision that produced Rain, Strawberry Fields, Lucy in the Sky, Baby You're a Rich Man and Glass Onion.
So while occasionally you feel as if you're listening to The Rutles back catalogue, (with Ron Nasty taking lead vocals every time), the album nevertheless has a curious charm. This kind of nostalgia exercise is nothing new after all. Hey I'm eagerly awaiting the vinyl re-release in a couple of months of The Rain Parade's Emergency Third Rail Power Trip which originally came out in 1983 and was plotting a mightily similar path, (though drawing on The Byrds and Floyd more than the Fab Four). I'm as prone to this stuff as anyone else and like Family Hangover a great deal.
There's also plenty of self-awareness and wry humour on display here. On Tell Me (not posted here), Walrus mutate into Robyn Hitchcock tackling White Rabbit, to considerable comic effect. They're having fun and there's nothing really to criticise there especially as there's plenty of fun to be had here for the listener too. Far out!