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KingBathmat - Fantastic Freak Show Carnival

KingBathmat - Freak Show CarnivalKingBathmat, a.k.a. John Bassett, returns in 2005 with his third album in as many years, Fantastic Freak Show Carnival.

As with the previous albums, Son of A Nun and Crowning Glory, there is a whiff of late 60's Beatles, great vocals, clever flowing lyrics and memorable tunes.  However, Fantastic Freak Show Carnival introduces a new direction for KingBathmat.

This is very much a concept album, the concept being the worse elements of life, make that 'lowlifes', that litter our society.  Now, this is not about the so called 'feral' youth who roam the streets in groups of two or more looking for their next victim who care little about authority, consequences of actions nor respect for people or property.  This is more about life's unfortunates who, for whatever reason, have become drunks, druggies, mentally ill, twisted and depraved.  The 'freak show' element comes to life particularly at night.

Unlike the previous KingBathmat albums, Fantastic Freak Show Carnival takes on a darker and heavier sound.  Whilst retaining and possibly increasing the psychedelic aspect of the music, John has incorporated a strong progressive element generally in a Porcupine Tree vein but with moments of Steve Hackett (for example in Sweet Iris).  And believe me, there are some beautiful pieces of music throughout.

Listing to the CD over and over, I am loathe to pick out any particular tracks because they are all genuinely good, well brilliant in my mind. KingBathmat has, in this album, produced its best work to date in all respects.  See the KingBathmat website (link below) to purchase.

(KingBathmat are now a band with John on bass and vocals, Lee Sulsh (guitar) and Bernie Smirnoff (drums) and will be performing their first gigs on May26/27 in Liverpool and on June 19th 2005 at London Rock Garden.)

Jem Jedrzejewski



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