TROUBLE PILGRIM is the sound of a band reconnecting with all the musical roots which initially inspired them, but as people with life experience rather than as teenagers. The Flaming Groovies in particular stand as a comparison to the resultant sound - a blend of very many raw underground influences with the more sophisticated likes of The Byrds, Love, Bowie, Elvis Costello etc... It could of course be assumed that the band had already arrived at this sound much earlier.... many of their odd-bits - BUYING GOLD IN HEAVEN (80), TAKE MY HEART AND RUN (80), PLURA BELLE (87) would sit comfortably within this collection of tracks.
The opening track TROUBLE PILGRIM is a rigid garage workout and in many ways ( EPs aside ) the perfect introduction to where the band have landed soundwise. Not content with the basic band ( although that’s pretty much what you get live ), they’ve embellished the rawness throughout with 12 string guitars, vintage synths, organs and even Glockenspiels and French Horns. There’s little doubt this expanding of possibilities in the studio was learned and noted while working on GHOSTOWN with Tony Visconti, but here it’s driven by their own experience rather than the guiding hand of a hotshot name producer.
More at the link. Boz, the reviewer, contributes great editorial cartoons to my local paper. Also does artwork for various punk bands of my acquaintanceship.