Anton Barbeau – Magic Act (2016)

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For more than 20 years, Anton Barbeau has been pumping out flights of fancy-free freaky frolic that has attracted stellar reviews from folks all over the world. Stationed in a dimension populated by surrealistic images and characters, the Sacramento, Calif.-born singer, songwriter and multiple instrumentalist — who currently resides in Berlin, Germany — not only dispenses a flair for composing animated lyrics, but also sports a talent for sculpting striking sounds and structures.

Anton Barbeau’s latest album, Magic Act (set to be issued March 4, 2016 on Mystery Lawn Records) retains the signature style he’s admired for, while still managing to fling just enough changes into the gig to avoid redundancy. Juggling the twin inspirations of psychedelic ambition and new wave whimsy, the album taps into the same creative well left-field luminaries like early Pink Floyd, the Electric Prunes, 10CC, Game Theory, XTC and Devo drew ideas from.

Even before hearing songs such as “Milk Churn In The Morning,” “Sit Your Leggy Down,” and “Heavy Psychedelic Toilet,” one can certainly envision the strangeness stitched within the fabric. Teeming with quirky but catchy tempos, Magic Act is further enhanced by nifty harmonies and hooks snapping and crackling to an appealing edginess. Other groovy tracks featured on the album are “Flying Spider,” “High Noon,” “Black Lemon Sauce,” and “Hop A Skip,” which calls to mind the 1910 Fruitgum Company making whoopee with Syd Barrett.

Anton Barbeau’s kooky but cool alchemy is in full swing on Magic Act, as each song carries its own distinctive personality. Keeping things real, the album favors a “less is more” attitude and approach, marked by warm and fuzzy garage rock feel. Romping and rattling with fascinating fun, Magic Act captures Anton doing what he does best and enjoying every minute of it.

Beverly Paterson

Beverly Paterson

Beverly Paterson was born the day Ben E. King hit No. 4 with "Stand By Me" -- which is actually one of her favorite songs, especially John Lennon's version. She's contributed to Lance Monthly and Amplifier, and served as Rock Beat International's associate editor. Paterson has also published Inside Out, and Twist & Shake. Contact Something Else! at reviews@somethingelsereviews.com.
Beverly Paterson
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