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Friday, December 6, 2013

Men on the Border - Syd Barrett Covers EXCELLENT!

Men on the Border
Men on the Border

OK, my long time Syd buddy, Goran Nystroem, sent me two CDs by his group - Men on the Border. As you can probably tell from the name, the folks in this group love Syd Barrett. The first disc, SHINE!, is all comprised of Syd Barrett covers. The second disc, JUMPSTART, has two Syd covers on it and a song called Have You Got It Yet? Get it? I listened to the Syd covers disc on the way to work and I am now listening to the other disc in my office.

OK, I know what you are saying to yourself, (groan) *Another* disc of Syd Barrett covers? Well, I am here to tell you that this is (for me) the most enjoyable such effort and I have heard them all. What sets this apart is that these songs are all performed by a single group. Additionally, the Men on the Border lend professionalism and polish to these songs that can even be lacking on the originals.

Like... Syd is all mandied out of his skull, playing with his put together band, doing the song differently on each take. Face it, sometimes it sounds like it. Then you have those bands, fronted by a chick with blue hair or a guy who sounds like a gelded Morrissey wannabee, and... It's hard to take sometimes. Then you have the cheezy effects; oh yes, the cheezy effects. This is SYD BARRETT we're covering so we have to slather on the cheezy effects.

No, this is the songs played by capable musicians who, obviously, know and love the material. I also noticed that they (sort of) added in the beginnings of Astronomy Domine (on Opel) and Interstellar Overdrive on another song. Like, the vibe is that it's gonna be one of those songs and then it morphs into whatever it is.

What do I say about this to make my point that it's good? First, I am a music snob. I HATE cover albums usually and I HATE fan produced stuff. Being me, people mail me CDs to listen to pretty frequently. I always listen to them and then they (usually) go into the pile of stuff that I never plan to listen to again. Listening to SHINE!, I found myself turning up the volume on the car stereo four times until it was about all the way up. I was doing the air guitar and the twitching that I do when I like something I'm listening to. What I am going to do is take SHINE! and burn that and then burn the Syd covers from JUMPSTART and have a killer disc for my car.

You guys should buy this disc! It's good! I endorse this! By going to the website I found out that Ian Barrett did the cover art for JUMPSTART.

Find the website here:

Find the Facebook page here:

Listen to SHINE! on Spotify:

Contact the band here:

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