Saturday, 24 August 2013

The Space Agency - Bombay Potatoes 7"

East meets west, surf meets spice, everyone has a groovy time.

Currently a household favourite round at mine is this limited 7” by Hove-based trio The Space Agency. The A-side is a surfy, twelve bar instrumental made all the more interesting and fun by the sitar lines that sit on top. You could easily imagine it being used in a '60s American teensploitation movie. I guess you could almost call it a novelty record (and that's a compliment by the way, novelty records are a very misunderstood and neglected genre I reckon).

Of course it was in the '60s when a lot of western musicians flirted with the mysterious drone and twang of the sitar, not least George Harrison. This 7” has more in common with the work of Ananda Shankar and Lord Sitar (aka top session man Big Jim Sullivan) than the full on immersion of Beatle George, mixing beat music with raga scales to make music that's kind of familiar yet takes you some place new too. It's beat music with added exotic spice.

The singles' other track 'Purple Power' is a more of a dramatic, energetic surf instrumental that pushes all the right retro buttons. It'll have even the most land-locked among us wanting to wax down our boards. Twang on brothers and sisters!

'Bombay Potatoes' is out now on Market Square Records. (Limited to 300 copies in a hand-numbered picture sleeve).