This is another post in the occasional Mayhem Virgins series of artists that are brand new to those of us who squat in the palatial squalor of Mayhem Towers. This time it is the turn of the wacky, punky combo known as Notorious Lightbulbs from the North East of England. The band is essentially a duo made up of Diego Wilde and Crystal Miss. They often collaborate with Danny ‘The Rain’ Allinson and he played or programmed all the drums on their new EP. It was absolute Twitter chance that I came across them after they liked and commented on a recent tweet from me about “Starz In Their Eyes” by Just Jack. I was hotly attracted by their marvellous, magical and magnificent song titles; “Sicadilly Pircus”, “Voodoo Stripper Junkie” and “Mountweazle” to name just a few. But song titles alone don’t make a great band do they? You have to be able to back it up with style, talent, pizazz and great tunes. Notorious Lightbulbs tick all the boxes on that score. Their new EP ‘Captain Mechanical’ is staggeringly good and deserves massive commercial success. Click here to check it out on Spotify.
The four track EP opens with the aforementioned “Voodoo Stripper Junkie” which slams into you like a runaway ten ton truck. This is perhaps the finest song about some kind of stripper since Mansun’s “Stripper Vicar”. It kicks off with a barrage of heavy punk style fuzzy riffs backed by some supremely tight drumming. There is a feel of early Arctic Monkeys here for me, although this has more punch and more electronica than those Sheffield lads did. The guitar solos could have stepped out of any number of 70s classic rock songs. There is an orchestral disco feel to “Far Out” somewhat akin to the Scissor Sisters and even M of “Pop Muzik” fame. The synth shapes on this stay with you long after the song is over. What can I say about “Mountweazle”? It is a splendorous mountain of a song which features a great vocal from Diego, perhaps the best on the EP, although that is a tough competition. I am ecstatically in love with the harmonies on closing track “Make Believe” especially the brief a capella moments.
Notorious Lightbulbs maintain a great air of mystery and are apparently never seen without their steampunk style glasses and hats. Rumour has it that they started life as a part of a creative group named ‘The Notorious Lightbulb Factory’ that wrote music for low-budget horror movies. As well as the new EP click here to check out some of their earlier material on SoundCloud. If you listen to this band and do not almost immediately love them then I suggest you check into hospital to have your musical taste operated on.