Three-and-a-half years from excavating The Sounds Of Monsterism Island Volume 1, album artwork designer, one-time RC Collector and all-round musical playboy Pete Fowler brings us a new guide to his mythical island.
Describing almost any other project, those very words would usually send us running to the nearest volcano hoping for a quick eruption and death by lava face-melt. When it comes to Fowler and his running mates, however, we’re far from stranded. From an apt Hawaiian intro setting the scene, we’re thrown into a world of electro cityscapes courtesy of Gruff Rhys’ Wild Robots Power Up (the Neon Neon sessions are clearly fondly remembered), RC contributor and Trunk label founder Jonny Trunk chucks us a lovely little jazz shuffle in Nest We Forget, while even Circulus don’t totally grate with their we’re-all-medieval-here, honest, schtick, neatly blending in with their environs on ’Til We Merry Meet Again.
The spoken word interludes and whole “narrator Harry Squonjax” thing might smack of trying too hard (though the electro-folk of Squonjax/Fowler’s Chocolate Skull is a high point), while the spoken interludes certainly tire after a while. Offer a little indulgence and Monsterism Island can be a lovely listen, though it won’t make your desert island discs.