Bruce's Blog

a handful of dimes and a jukebox

A Clip Round The Ear

Prolific songwriter Glenn Prangnell has released yet another album of fun, classy and well-crafted pop songs under his Groovy Uncle guise and this one may actually be the best yet. Mrs Saywell Says is a real pot-boiler — I mistyped and wrote “pop-boiler”, which is actually an accurate description. Great British pop with echoes of Ray Davies with layers of other influences so that it’s a bit like The Dukes of Stratosphear.  Really good. I Thought It Was About Time  is Glenn getting his Burt Bacharach on with the help of Suzi Chunk on vocals. Some Motown in there too.  And he uses that Sandy Denny chord change from Who Knows Where The Time Goes. Suzi is amazing on this one! Clearly it was written for her to sing; her voice is part of the song itself. That Nillson like stuff that she does at the end — and WOW, that high note at the end blew me away!

Our Gary’s No Fool is back to the time tested recipe of writing about the odd fellow down the block. Something tells me that Glenn likes The Beatles just a wee bit. The Moon And Back is Suzi doing a heavier one that reminds me a bit of Humble Pie. I could imagine Steve Marriott doing those rhythm power chords and as wonderful as Suzi is on this track, I would have loved to hear Steve screaming out this song. I Really Wouldn’t Know How is back to Glenn’s “softer side” with Suzi on vocals. This is a Dusty-esque thing that Suzi sings with amazing strength and control. The backing track is especially superb on this one. Really, super nice.

Oil And Color Man is a variation on the “odd fellow down the block” to be “the menacing man down the block”. Something tells me that this is a political statement. Though I’m having trouble catching all of the lyrics — sometimes they go by very quickly with more than a few Britishisms, in-jokes, and the occasional nasty word. The Scheme Of Things… nice! Surprisingly nice. It’s an early sixties pop bossa nova, with maybe someone like Nancy Wilson on vocal and Suzi warms right into that beautifully. This song is really a showcase for her low range and again, another really nice backing track. Got Up And Gone really reminds me of Glenn and Suzi’s first collaboration Girl From The Neck Down. It’s got that funky thing that Suzi really sings great.

Invisible Man hides some pretty cynical lyrics under a pretty pop theme. Things I’ve Been Meaning To Say is a really pretty doo-wop duet with Glenn and Suzi. At first, I thought Above My Station sounded like Robyn Hitchcock, but then more Neil Inness-like. Actually I like this song a lot. I think this is my favorite song on the record. Taking a leaf from George Martin’s book, he starts and ends the album with a pot-boiler, this time with Suzi doing Now Your Pain Is Over. Another song clearly written just for Suzi’s voice and is the star of this one, front and center.

My copy is on green vinyl and stamped as “013” (out of 100). It included a balloon, post card (wish Glenn and Suzi had signed it!), and groovy record sleeve for me to colour. I love it when Glenn goes crazy on goodies to include. It really is a wonderful record; Glenn, Suzi and all of Groovy Uncle should be very proud.

You can purchase your own copy at Glenn’s Groovy Uncle website: http://groovy-uncle.co.uk

Categories: Music, Records

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