Album: Gorky's Zygotic Mynci

Sleep/Holiday, Sanctuary
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The Independent Culture

Gorky's Zygotic Mynci have habitually trodden a path perilously close to the brink of the insufferably fey, but with the narcoleptic Sleep/Holiday they go tumbling over the edge, as if determined to bear out all the criticisms of them as terminally twee. Always flimsy and unassuming at the best of times, Euros Childs' songs here are so gossamer-thin they barely register melodically, and his vocals are so diffident they seem to disappear into the mild confections of piano, acoustic guitar and violin, which constitute the arrangements - themselves almost evaporated. The whole experience, for the listener, is like trying to grasp hold of mist, trying to secure the songs' shapes in one's mind. The closest they come to a memorable melody is "Eyes of Green, Green, Green", which is a pop refrain by Gorky's standards; and the closest they come to a workable structure is "Country", whose rustic fiddle arrangement has a sort of etiolated bluegrass character. The only time Childs' delivery makes much of an impression, meanwhile, is right at the end of "Single to Fairwater", when he swears. There's an almost wilful unworldliness about the album, best represented by the ridiculous "Mow The Lawn", a gardening song that simply demonstrates their lack of the requisite weight and momentum to drive the style. Whatever next - a song about installing a water feature, maybe? Winsome, but not winning.

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