Wednesday, December 19, 2018

Cassette Review //
Mark Sultan
"Let Me Out"
(Burger Records)

$5.99 // //

What starts as upbeat organ rock continues with this punk feel and just overall stretches the boundaries of garage rock.   A little bit of Dylan, a little bit of Madcap (Remember them?) and these fuzzy guitar riffs can make you feel something like you've never felt before.   It's somewhat catchy on the second song, "The Other Two", the pace really picks up.   At times it still feels like it could be lo-fi, like a home recording, and I could see why this would also sound great on vinyl but you know I prefer cassettes over all else.

I'm reminded of "That Thing You Do!" before "Everybody Knows" becomes a bit darker like going through that desert on a horse with no name.   I can hear Subsonics in here, for more of a modern reference, and by the time you reach the end of Side A you'll hear the Groovie Ghoulies come out on "Last Chance".   I also really enjoy how most of these songs are titled as the chorus would suggest, though this is not the case with "Believe Me", which is one of my favorites on here.

On the flip side we feel as much like this is a fun, clambake type of vibe as it could be a little more haunted such as "Scooby-Doo".     The guitar riffs are right on and this is a special type of music that not just anyone can make.    Somewhere between the 1960's rock n roll, even the 1950's, and well, it just seems to carry on into the present.    The way the organs sing on "Let Me Out" is a type of music I heard briefly in the early '00's (The Gadjits after they changed their sound, Blue Meanies, maybe a few others?) but it's not something I hear often enough and for that I am glad for Mark Sultan.

He just belts it out on "Heed This Message" and the organs feel much more apparent on this side than they were on Side A.   "Black Magic" is the theme song to some forgotten movie from the 1960's I've never seen-- I just know it!  "The Problem" can be more of a song for slackers, yet somehow the music still makes me want to get up and do something... anything.     At times, this also reminds me of The Romantics, who I don't think get enough credit for their music and the style they made famous via Chuck E. Cheese. 

While I'm sure there are many artists out there trying to make music which sounds like Mark Sultan, there is only one Mark Sultan (Shut up, Bandcamp! You're not my real mom!) and this seems to be among the best.   It's the type of sound where you can say "I don't normally listen to this kind of music, but..."  Mark Sultan will be that exception for some, but if you're like me and appreciate all forms of music, "Let Me Out" will instead become the bar by which all other similar music is measured.

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