[sic] Magazine

Doug Tuttle – Doug Tuttle

For a renascent movement perhaps already at saturation point, psyche shows little sign of slowing. Released on the same day, for example, are two such LPs on the fine type-label Trouble In Mind. With no spoilers to be found here for Morgan Delt, who is, ahem, dealt with in a separate review, we turn our attention to Doug Tuttle, guitarist and one of the main songwriters in the solid, but now defunct New Hampshire outfit MMOSS.

Band members tend to go solo when they have a collection of tracks in hand that simply cannot wait to be absorbed by the day job. Tuttle didn’t have this luxury when MMOSS folded, nor the safety net of a significant other from whom, in his case, he’d also recently split. This LP could then sound like anything, but Tuttle chooses to tread familiar ground, albeit ground stripped of his former band’s more kraut-like leanings. And you’d be hard placed to pick the results out of a line-up of similar 60s jams save, perhaps, during the nevertheless very classic sounding “Lasting Away” in which you’ll find glitchy spoken-word samples and whooshing overdubs that hit like a bad trip just starting to kick in.

For the most part though, and with a swirl of mellotron and tie-dyed flute never far away, Tuttle treats us to a woozy jumble of jangling fairground psyche-pop. “Forget The Days” has a darker edge – that point where smiling clowns become creepy, while “We Could Live” mucks about with back masking techniques to sound like a particularly warped copy of Pet Sounds playing under a strong blanket of herb.

We’re talking, of course, about gloriously retro, Nuggets-style cast-offs, which Tuttle decorates with his likeable, heavy-lidded near-falsetto. And, closing out the mind-expanding lead single “Turn This Love”, he lets a tasty guitar solo ride the good vibrations of his West Coast harmonies, content elsewhere to be more restrained, such as on the long-haired “Leave Your Body”, which lollops along to the comforting flutter and drone of organ.

Whether the psyche revival has yet had its commercial day remains to be seen, but while there is still mileage in mining its most vintage moments there’ll still be plenty of willing ears to lap it up.

Best tracks: “Turn This Love” and “Lasting Away”

~The self-titled LP is released 27th January 2014 on Trouble In Mind.~