Spooled in a pink coffin

Hey Sholay – Self-titled furry pink tape

The Skinny: A country skipping tape.

The review proper: Seriously, it was in Mexico, USA and United Kingdom. But that’s another story…

It’s hard to categorise Hey Sholay under any tag, so after a few times pondering over their musical output, I think it’s safe to say they quite enjoyable, catchy and in a strange type of pop (or rock) that has some serious mixing of art and humour (!).

The strange, magical ride starts with a slow groove, ‘In bed with old nick (kids in bear suits on drugs)’. Like a small singalong in a campfire, the song’s pace is friendly, building until a nice groove is achieved. Great starter, and for the main course, there’s a nice trio of songs waiting in line.

The trifecta of this release. First is ‘Gold teeth and goodbyes (a song for the sparrows)’, a song rocking birdcalls and some great dramatic pauses that add an extra weight to the song. It’s gorgeous live and the added stuff in the recording (birdcalls, the intro, that really cool intro) make it even more memorable.

‘Dreamboat’ is a very rocky, dreamy song with some sweet ideas thrown around (“hug me / squeeze me tight”), built upon a very catchy rock and roll riff and some urgency in the bass (which does get a chance to shine throughout).

Finalising this terrific trio (sorry!) is ‘Devil at the backdoor’. The vocalising at the beginning is solemn and feels like the song could be a foreboding lament before a disaster. Instead, it’s quite peppy (dunno about the lyrics, though), with an upbeat rhythm similar to ‘Dreamboat’ but a slightly different feel.

‘Hoovering’. Exactly what it says on the tape. Some housekeeping is in order. Kind of of a segue for ‘Birth (a bleeding new start)’, the one little hurrah before it all ends. A fitting end to a tape with some history.

Liam’s vocals are a great hook to the musical powerhouse that is Hey Sholay. His vocalising (specially in ‘Devil at the backdoor’ and ‘…and goodbyes (a song for the sparrows)’) make them even more memorable. But he’s only one part of this gestalt, cuddly monster called Hey Sholay. Backed by four extremely capable musicians, the pure essence of Hey Sholay is that they are (or seem) to be enjoying the music they are making together.

—Sam

Hey Sholay

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