Turn the lights down low, turn up your stereo, set the mood right to experience Save Yourself, the incredible new studio full-length album by Washington, D.C.’s Make Up. Now boasting six full-length albums since the band’s inception in 1995 (including the massive 23-track singles compilation I Want Some released earlier this year on ), Make Up have succeeded in capturing what is certainly their finest and most intricate work to date, a record standing apart as their own shimmering and ultra-psychedelic crown jewel.
Ample time invested in the studio for Save Yourself enabled the new material to blossom into beautifully orchestrated excursions, illustrating the direction Make Up have been traveling towards all along. Psychedelia bleeds in electric flashes all over this tab of multi-colored microdot, completely saturating Make Up’s R’n’B-laced garage punk gospel…their most recent singles merely hinted at such altered states! Lyrically the songs continue their fascination with childbirth and spiritual redemption. “Save Yourself”, the album’s title track, burrows into cavernous corners of the mind in a hallucinatory haze; “White Belts” bounces on a ripping keyboard riff that would cause Funkadelic and early-70’s Stevie Wonder to cry uncle. “The Prophet” synthesizes the sound of a sitar, while “Call Me Mommy” rides a wave of vintage organ, acoustic guitar, bouncing bass lines and trumpet for that perfect 60’s pop sound. Culminating with an arrangement of the traditional tune “Hey Joe”, Ian Svenonius and guest vocalist Heather Worley play off each other in call-and-response while the song majestically builds into an MC5 style guitar blowout.
Save Yourself unveils Love, Moby Grape and Cream in a Southern-style baptism over the ecstatic bodies of George Clinton and Gang of Four, creating a new amalgamation best described as “Gospedelic”. Make Up’s latest tour through America marked their most on-fire performances ever, lending further proof that the band is peaking as the hottest independent group working today. Save Yourself is their latest document to that claim. Produced by Brendan Canty.
released October 26, 1999
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