John Merrick's Remains

Digging Up The Remains sleeve]"Digging Up The Remains" (Album, 2004)

DMP Records

In a normal universe nothing of any possible worth could come from a band with the name John Merrick's Remains. Well then, it is quite nice to discover that we are, apparently, not living in a normal universe. For this debut album by two bag-headed lads from England proves that even behind the most uninspiring of facades can lie the most curious musical experiences. This is post-punk, cheap trash electro that has lyrical inspiration from god-knows where, but count your lucky stars that DMP have seen fit to release this on an unsuspecting public.

JM Remains made an impression previously with the single Blood On The Rocks a truly demented cover of the Neil Diamond classic. Thankfully, that's included on this twelve tracker. But that's not the half of it. It takes both audacity and talent to cover a song like Wonderful World - yes, the very same one made famous by old gravel throat himself - Lou Armstrong, and not only pull it off, but pull it of in style. On Distraught you half expect Bonnie Tyler to come in after the power ballad intro. Other highlights include Bohemian, and I Killed The Bride. Digging Up The Remains is deliriously original and John Merrick's Remains are essential idiots in a world dragged down by dreary 'normal' folk. 7/10

Rob Dyer (February, 2005)

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