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Wooden Head

Price: £11.16 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
Includes FREE MP3 version of this album.
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Product details

  • Audio CD (9 Jun. 2014)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Fortuna Pop
  • ASIN: B00K6Y679S
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 83,071 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Listen to Samples and Buy MP3s

Songs from this album are available to purchase as MP3s. Click on "Buy MP3" or view the MP3 Album.

Song Title Time Price
Listen  1. Gone 2:30£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  2. Sun 2:42£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  3. Ruby 2:59£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  4. Now I Understand 2:22£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  5. Don't You Want to Know (What You're Going to Be) 2:00£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  6. Magazine 2:26£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  7. Stereolab 2:31£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  8. Step into the Cold 3:01£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen  9. Tire Me Out 1:53£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen10. Always There 3:26£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen11. Summer's Gone 2:04£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen12. What Am I to Do 1:48£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen13. You Shouldn't Have Gone 4:11£0.99  Buy MP3 
Listen14. You'll See 2:29£0.99  Buy MP3 

Product Description

'Heavyweight Vinyl LP + MP3.Mining the rich territories of The Velvet Underground and The Beach Boys, their debut album proper "Wooden Head" features fourteen thrillingly taut and melodic pop songs with a deep, dark undercurrent. Comprised of Argentinian Max Claps and James Hoare (also of Veronica Falls) – who both sing and write the songs – and joined by Daniel Nellis (bass) and Robert Syme (drums), the band have already shared stages with the likes of Real Estate, Woods, Crystal Stilts, Toy and Metronomy. Maximo Claps arrived in London in 2008 on a one-way ticket from Buenos Aires, aided by former Rolling Stones manager Andrew Loog Oldham. Oldham had produced a record by Claps' Argentinian band of the time but the group had fallen apart in a mess of drugs and acrimony and Claps' family were attempting to intervene by sending him to a mental hospital. The only option seemed to be to flee the country. As Claps recalls, "The day before flying to the UK I got run over by a car and had to escape hospital in order to make it so I arrived with bandages and my head all stitched up." A few weeks later Max walked into the vintage clothes shop where James Hoare sat behind the counter reading a book on The Velvet Underground, and attempted to cause a diversion while his kleptomaniac girlfriend stole a pair of boots. “She didn't steal them in the end,” says Max. “They weren't her size”. However, the shop assistant and the would-be accomplice bonded over a mutual love of the Velvets, Love, Felt and West Coast pop and began writing together, taking their name from a song by the pioneering soft psych band The Free Design. In 2010 they released their first single, "Recalling", following it up with a five-song EP for London label No Pain in Pop. In 2013 Lo Recordings released all their output to date on a collection titled "Waiting for the Summer", followed by the single “First Step Out” in February 2014. Their new album was recorded at a studio in Hackney, as well as at home in their old flat in Whitechapel on a broken 8-track reel-to-reel bought off eBay from an angry guy who threatened to shoot them and chop off their balls when they attempted to return it - a terrifying experience for a pair of skinny indie boys. Taking inspiration from Berlin-era Lou Reed, Jesus and Mary Chain’s “Darklands”, The Television Personalities and West Coast Pop Art Experimental Band, the songs are breezy and easy on the ear, with sublime harmonies and chiming Byrdsian guitar, but with a darker twist and a pervasive air of melancholy. Stand-out tracks include the beautiful but sad “Summer’s Gone” (about mental illness), “Magazine” (an upbeat number written from the perspective of a bullet in the barrel of a gun) and “You’ll See” (about how when you die you’ll see everyone you know, all there lined up in a row). With "Wooden Head", The Proper Ornaments prove that it is still possible to create an album of pure pop perfection. Max's girlfriend may not have stolen the boots, but The Proper Ornaments are about to steal your heart. “The joint project of James and Max, through romantic drama that borders on that of The Libertines. And when you hear The Proper Ornaments you’ll see why it’s all worth it.'

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By The Wolf TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 21 Aug. 2014
Format: Audio CD
James Hoare, Max Claps and cohorts make a very nice noise on their
album Wooden Heads. That The Proper Ornaments have a strong
affection for 60's psychedelia is clearly evident in these fourteen
compositions. There's a California-surf-meets-kafatan-ambience about
the project which, for one who has a great fondness for the music of
that decade, brings back sweet memories of naive happy hippie ideals.

Jump straight to 'Magazine' for a taste of The Summer Of Love; its a
lovely melody wrapped up in a web of jangly guitars and soft vocal
harmonies. So too the gorgeously irridescent 'Ruby', a veritable gem.

Tracks such as 'Stereolab' and 'You Shouldn't Have Gone' have a
somewhat heavier gait but the ensemble never quite loses sight of their
hazy nostalgic vision. The tunes are strong and the sentiments are sincere.

Grab it now before you find yourself up to your neck in Autumn leaves.

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Format: Audio CD
As far as monikers, music genres and buzzwords go, the music industry suffers almost by definition of hyperbole. The jaded reviewer can feel like he's being overloaded with fake excitement, and therefore hardly ever gets excited by any new music at all. The term 'neo-psychedelic' is certainly one of those terms that's been so overused as to have become almost meaningless, covering everyone from Echo and the Bunnymen to The Stone Roses and The Flaming Lips. So it's refreshing to come across a band who not only carry this term with pride but do it justice as well. You can imagine the members of The Proper Ornaments own an extensive collection of 60s and 70s obscure psychedelic records,, providing them with never ending inspiration. There's worse places to look for ideas, and with Wooden Head, The Proper Ornaments have delivered a record that deftly incorporates 60s psychedelica, folk rock, 80s acid rock and quirky, catchy indie-rock a la Flaming Lips or Tame Impala.

Airy Byrds like vocal harmonies float addictively over chiming guitars, groaning bass and Moe Tucker like drums, relentlessly propelling the Proper Ornaments wall of sound.

The only quibble would be that some of the tunes sound a bit under developed or could have been scrapped altogether. Listening to the album in one sitting, some songs tend to flow into another until the listener may feel like he/she is floating in a not unpleasant but rather murky haze with nothing much happening. What's now a 14 track album could have made a killer EP or a very strong 10 track album.

"Gone" is a great opener, sounding like The Jesus and Mary Chain on Valium, with beautifully laconic vocals over a groaning wall of sound plodding forwards in the most irresistible fashion.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 1 review
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
Exceptional mid-tempo indie guitar pop 8 Aug. 2014
By Charlie Quaker - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
London debut of mid-tempo indie guitar pop with an abundance of hooks & harmonies resting comfortable in a subtle psychedelic beauty. The guitar notes are thick & clear with a substantive resonance, while the plod-along melody lines pull you in with the power of hypnotic appeal. Throbbing bass thumps hold delicate vocals in the midst of addictively driving psych/pop songs structures. The band adeptly combines influences that range from haunting twang-folk to classic rock to motorik chug-a-lug, while never losing touch with their compelling melodic core. Includes members from Veronica Falls and Let’s Wrestle. Recalls bands like Elf Power, Nada Surf, the High Dials, Phoenix Foundation, House of Love, Yo La Tengo, Olivia Tremor Control, the Velvet Underground, Woods, Younghusband. These are the kind of pop songs you wish would never end. “Wooden Head” is an absolutely gorgeous album with a potent, charming allure. Highly Recommended.
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