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Boomkat Product Review:
Most of you might not remember the Warp sublabel Gift (the early 90s indie offshoot which famously first signed indie kings Pulp!) but Mr. Wildgoose was once signed by them with his band Various Vegetables, they didn’t last long though and disbanded before he had even turned 16. Cut into the present, where Wildgoose is best known for being a local hero in Sheffield, a busker who plays in a well known town spot. Wildgoose’s second album for the Sketchbook label, ‘Afterlife’ is something of a psych-pop gem – and takes his worldly influences, framing them into a surreal world where folk, punk and garage rock can coexist peacefully. There are certainly elements of the Beach Boys here, the multi layered influence of Brian Wilson coming across loud and clear, but also traces of Beck (in the odd lyrical content), nudges towards the Velvet Underground or Pavement and a big nod towards psychedelic pop dons The Flaming Lips. This is a great collection of tracks, and certainly an album for those after a bit more scope from their pop music – just as ‘The Soft Bulletin’ and ‘Yoshimi…’ gave us a reason to go out in the sun again, ‘Afterlife’ has that same life affirming effect, and dishes it out in spades.