At surface level, Kyle Thomas’ own thoughts about his new album have hinted to hint at a massive reinvention of his sound, a complete 180 to the beer-spilling, eccentric garage rock he so happily fuelled on previous LP ‘Black Moon Spell’. And to an extent, he’s right. ‘The Other’ provides a more expansive and atmospheric landscape that lends itself to various genres and moods – the use of organs, for one, is the most striking, as well as a more ambient feel.
Listening to the title track, you’d be right in thinking that he’s completely discarded his lo-fi debauchery in favour for a more chill direction. But that first track is a bold offering, the most unlike his past work – and the most mature. Choosing to start the record with it however, feels like a red herring, as elements of the classic King Tuff pop up and bleed through the rest of the record. While not all-out riotous slacker-pop, he incorporates particles of honky-tonk rock, wry witticism in an admittedly more muted and seasoned, but still measured, present-day evolution of King Tuff.
It’s the cacophony of a diverse range of soundscapes, all recalling different times and periods, that work together to form a helter-skelter musical puzzle. There are remnants of ‘60s Motown by way of The Beatles in the backing choruses of ‘Thru the Cracks’, while ‘Psycho Star’ explores the ever-expansive presence of psych rock at its finest.
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