‘I approached this record with a no-holds-barred attitude from beginning to end’

Brent Windler
Brent Windler

Kansas City singer-songwriter Brent Windler has made the album of the summer, but he only just snuck in with it – his  solo debut, New Morning Howl, which is soaked in the sunshine sounds of The Beach Boys and classic West Coast ’60s pop, but with a hint of Americana, came out in late August. 

It’s a lush and lavish record, with rich arrangements – warm and optimistic. One of the songs is even called Mr Sun – a harmony-laden, Beatles-like hymn to the healing powers of that big golden globe in the sky.

Opening song and first single, Around The Bend, is gorgeous, Fountains of Wayne-style power-pop, with heavenly harmonies. Clocking in at around six minutes, My Josephine (Wildwood Flowers Are Where You Roam) is a Brian Wilson-esque, widescreen epic that’s symphonic and dream-like, while the title track, with its sweeping strings, uplifting chorus, bouncy melody and twangy guitar, is pure Pet Sounds.

The spectral and folky Spanish Jasmine is the perfect song to listen to as summer turns to autumn: Windler sounds like Simon & Garfunkel – with synths.

The Glitter and The Roar, features some great Easy Listening horns, and closing anthem,  In My Daze is a big, Beatlesy, psych-tinged anthem, with piano, slide guitar and massed harmonies.

In an exclusive interview, Say It With Garage Flowers spoke to Windler about the new record.

“I didn’t really start with any direct influences in mind, but as the record came together, my ‘60s and ‘70s influences definitely started to crawl out,” he tells us.

Brent Windler


Hi Brent. How’s it going? Where are you and what’s the vibe like?

Brent Windler:  I’m doing alright – thanks for asking. I’m in Kansas City and everything here is going alright. If I had to complain, it’s really hot here at the moment…

How was lockdown for you?

BW: It was pretty crazy, like it was everywhere. I was lucky enough to be able to work at home, so I had it better than a lot of folks. It was a strange blur of a year – lots of hanging out with friends and family through my computer screen, and the terrible feeling that everything was crumbling.

Congratulations on the new album. It’s a beauty. New Morning Howl is your first solo record. What took you so long? 

BW: Thank you. I’m happy you’re digging it. I actually started to record some solo material about seven years ago – some of it was released in 2019 –  but life got in the way, as it does sometimes, and I refocused on other musical projects I was involved with at the time.

I actually have a whole other solo record that is just waiting to be finished that I started around that time, but I have been enjoying writing new material so much I’m not sure when I’ll get back to it, if ever.

Did lockdown affect the record? The album feels warm and optimistic, despite the current state of the world…

BW: I definitely think it affected the album. The way it was made would have been completely different had lockdown never happened, but I’m happy that the album feels optimistic and has a warm quality to it. I’m not sure any of that was intentional, but we were definitely trying to stay as optimistic as humanely possible while recording it – even though we failed on a regular basis. I know we tried make it work the best we could, and I think it made for an interesting record.

What’s your musical background? You’re from the Midwest. How was it growing up there?

BW: I’m from Kansas City, Missouri. I didn’t have much of a musical background growing up. I’m self-taught –  a music obsessive –  and I just stuck with it. Kansas City was a great city to grow up in, but, like anywhere, it’s got its ups and downs. I would be lying if I didn’t say I wish we had a mountain range near us, or the ocean I could walk down to, but there is something beautiful, calm, and strange about the Midwest that I have grown to love.

‘I’m happy that the album feels optimistic and has a warm quality to it. I’m not sure any of that was intentional’

Brent Windler

What were your earliest music memories and influences?

BW: Hmmm…. Some of my earliest music memories are getting The Beatles and The Monkees Greatest Hits on cassette. Also I remember a lot of Creedence Clearwater Revival being played on family road trips, as well as late ‘50s/ early ‘60’s rock n roll. I specifically remember loving the Monotones song The Book of Love – that always stood out to me when I was really little. As I got older, my influences definitely grew wider. I loved and still love everything from that era, but I got into a lot of punk and indie acts in my teens, and my palette grew to loving everything from Bob Dylan to My Bloody Valentine to Fugazi. There’s too many to name.

Have you been in many bands? When did you start writing songs?

BW: I have been in many bands over the years. I played in the indie rock group The Casket Lottery for a while, doing a record with them in 2012. I also played bass in the indie band The Republic Tigers, and I was putting out records with Sons of Great Dane, which was more of my songwriting vehicle.

I started really getting into songwriting in my early twenties and I became obsessed with the craft. I had dabbled in my teens, but there was really nothing worthwhile that came out of it. Honestly not until these past five or so years do I feel like I started to feel more comfortable as a songwriter.

Tell us about your group Sons of Great Dane…

Sons is a band that was started around 2007-2008 with my good friend and bass player, Nolle. I had just gotten off tour, and had been gone for about six months and needed a place to crash until I got my own place to stay.  He was nice enough to let me crash on his couch for a while, and I had written a batch of songs while I was out on tour, so we just started to play around with them and decided they were good enough to put together a band. We have released three records so far, and I’m sure we will get around to doing another in the future here if time permits.

Let’s talk more about your album, New Morning Howl. How did you approach the sound of the record? It often has a lush, widescreen, almost symphonic feel. The songs are layered, with rich arrangements. What were you aiming for from a sonic point of view? It has strings and horns – it’s a big-sounding record…

BW: I approached this record with a no-holds-barred attitude from beginning to end – every idea, whether it turned out good or bad, was tried.  On other albums I have made songs that were specifically written with a band or a time frame in mind, so there were lots of ideas that never got tried because it seemed like a bit much, or we just didn’t have enough time and/or money. I didn’t put a time frame on this record, which freed me up in a way. I enjoyed the idea of just writing whatever I wanted to, and not having any certain style or agenda in mind. Sonically it’s the type of record I have been wanting to make for a long while – big but not in the typical big guitar style. I have always been interested in other ways to colour songs with instrumentation, and I think I attempted that on this record. Not to say there aren’t a lot of guitars, because there are a shitload!

What were your influences for the record?

BW: I didn’t really start with any direct influences in mind, but as the record came together, my ‘60s and ‘70s influences definitely started to crawl out. It all came pretty naturally and glued together without a whole lot of thought at first. I think after we got the first few songs together, I started to see more of a vision of where the train was moving.

Brent Windler
Brent Windler at Courtesy Tone studio

How were the recording sessions? Where did you make the album?

BW: The sessions were done at a studio here in the city called Courtesy Tone, owned by a great engineer/mixer named Ryan Benton. We started to put together the record in early 2020, and when we really started to get going on it the pandemic hit and things slowed way down. We made it work the best we could though, doing things slowly and safely through the rest of the year. It was a very strange way to record a record, I would walk up to the studio and mask up, and then cut something quickly and then be on my way, so it was done in small pieces at a time. We also did a lot of things remotely as well. There are so many great musicians that played on the record that lived nowhere near us, and did an amazing job.

Were all of the songs written for the record, or are any of them old ones you’d been hanging on to?

BW: There were actually only a couple that were written during the recording process – all the others are songs had been floating around for quite a while. Some had been tried out for other projects, but were pulled away once I realised they were not going to fit. There was even one that I wrote in my early twenties that was revamped.

Let’s talk about some of the songs. If I pick a few and give you my thoughts on them, can you tell me yours?

BW: Sure – sounds good.

The first song on the record, Around The Bend, is gorgeous, melodic jangly guitar pop with a West Coast feel and also a Fountains of Wayne vibe. What can you tell us about it?

BW: This was the first song we started with at the beginning of 2020. It was actually a song that was written for another project I was working on called Dandelions, but as I was starting to think about what songs I wanted to do for the record, it seemed to fit with the batch I was imagining. The song was inspired by a friend lyrically and musically – he had been listening to a lot of jangle pop songs and I was inspired to write something in that vein. I really wanted to get a female vocal on it and was lucky enough to get the great musician, Heidi Gluck, to sing on it. She’s from Lawrence, Kansas, and vocals really give it a dream-like feel, which was perfect for the song.

On that note, My Josephine (Wildwood Flowers Are Where You Roam) is also dream-like, and lush – an almost six-minute epic…

BW: This one was written a little while ago, and honestly, I thought was it pretty boring at first. I always really enjoyed the verse progression, but nothing really stood out to me about it outside of that and the melody. I had a friend that really liked the song and would always request that one at solo acoustic shows, so I started to think maybe there was something there. Once I started to add parts over the top of it, the song came to life for me and I got excited about it. The ending I really wanted to be trance-like, almost like a mantra, so you could get lost in the repetition. Then having things coming in and out as the song goes on, but never losing that melody playing over and over. Now it’s one of my favourites on the record. I’m happy I stuck with it.

Spanish Jasmine is very haunting. It sounds like Simon & Garfunkel, but with synths… What’s your take on it?

BW: This is the song I was talking about earlier that was written in my early twenties. It’s definitely the oldest song on the record. I was going back through a bunch of old songs I had demoed back in the day and ran across this one. I felt it would fit the record well. I wanted some synths of some sort on it, so we reached out to a great musician named Nate Harold. He did an amazing job, and in my eyes, what he added gives the song its uniqueness.

The title track is another lushly orchestrated song. It has a Beach Boys feel. Would you agree?

BW: I agree – it definitely has a Beach Boys vibe going on. I borrowed a tenor ukulele from my good friend’s daughter, mainly just for fun, as I was bored with playing guitar. While I had it, I started to write a song and this was what came out of it. This song sort of became an experiment. We laid down the uke part and drums and main vocals, then sent it over to an amazing violinist and string arranger, Kaitlin Wolfberg, to have her arrange some strings over it. I didn’t want to put anything else down until we got back what she put down, as I wanted to build the rest of the song around her strings. It was a different way than I had ever put together a song, and I really enjoyed how this one came together.

The Glitter and the Roar has some great Easy Listening horns on it…

BW: There is a great author named Seth Borgen, and he put out a collection of short stories called If I Die in Ohio. One of my favourite stories from it is called The Glitter and the Roar, so the lyrics were inspired by that. I really like the way this one turned out both musically and lyrically. I really wanted the music to carry the lyrics and give them a big cinematic feel. It ebbs and flows throughout – one of those songs I hope gets better with more listens.

In My Daze is a big finish to the record. It’s quite Beatlesy and a bit psychedelic, with slide guitar. I like the strange ‘whistling’ sound on it. What’s that?

BW: This song is another old one. It was originally played by and written for Sons of Great Dane, but I never felt it was finished or fit very well. The whistling sound is me drenched in reverb. I’m not a great whistler, so that was a huge pain in the ass and took me forever to get right. The slide part was originally put down as a reminder of what I wanted the whistle to be, but I ended up really liking it in the mix, so we kept it. I knew from the beginning that I wanted this song to end the record, and I think it turned out well and wrapped things up nicely.

Brent Windler

What are your plans for the rest of the year? Any gigs planned?

BW: I’m playing some shows here and around the Midwest this fall and winter. I hope to get out and do a lot more in 2022, but will see how everything turns out. I’m also going to hopefully have a few more songs to share by the end of this year as well.

Can we expect to see you play in the UK one day?

BW: I would love that. Hopefully all the stars align and everyone can get back out there and touring on a more regular basis. If I can get over there, I’ll definitely come play some shows.

Finally, what music – new and old –  have you been enjoying recently?

BW: Hmmm… Here is a handful I have been listening to as of lately:

Liam Kazar – Due North

Mini Trees – Carrying On

The Beach Boys – Sunflower

Supergrass – Road to Rouen

New Morning Howl  by Brent Windler is out now on Goldstar Recordings.





Nautical but nice

The Mariners: Paul Iliffe and Luke Williamson

During lockdown last year, Say It With Garage Flowers stumbled across ‘60s-obsessed, East Midlands psych-pop band The Mariners (Luke Williamson – vocals/rhythm guitar; Paul Iliffe – lead guitar; Luke Headland – bass/keys) and Richard Pine – drums) on Twitter and fell in love with their music.

Their debut album, The Tides of Time, was one of our favourite records of 2020. A collection of unashamedly retro and nostalgic songs about girls, drinking tea, staying in bed and watching quirky characters who live down the street, it was steeped in the sounds of The Kinks, The Zombies and The Beatles, but also tipped its, er, mariner’s cap to cosmic Scousers The Coral, The La’s, John Power and Shack.

Now, only 12 months later, they’ve released the follow-up, Tales From The Great Central Line Volume One, which is less psych and more pop than its predecessor, but is essentially a similar trip down Dead End Street and Penny Lane, but with some added country rock and folk influences.

It contains no less than five songs with girls’ names in their titles – one of which, the first single, Dear Genevieve, is an irresistibly jaunty strum that’s a love letter to Luke Williamson’s young daughter. The groovy, organ-led There Before Time is a close cousin of The Zombies’ She’s Not There, the gorgeous and reflective Catch My Breath is a stripped-down acoustic ballad, while Royston’s Lament is a yearning and melancholy tale of growing older by the day that laments the loss of community and showcases a slightly darker side to The Mariners.

‘Tales From The Great Central Line Volume One is less psych and more pop than its predecessor, but essentially it’s a similar trip down Dead End Street and Penny Lane, but with some added country rock and folk influences’

Luke Williamson, who is also the band’s main songwriter, and lead guitarist, Paul Iliffe, kindly offered to do their first ever face-to-face interview with us, so when Covid restrictions eased a few weeks ago, we met up with them in a pub in the Buckinghamshire town of Amersham, not far from Say It With Garage Flowers HQ.

The boozer just so happened to be opposite a record shop – the brilliantly named, er, The Record Shop. Don’t you just love it when a plan comes together?

You’ll have to read all of the article to find out what records they bought…


You’ve released two albums in a year. Did lockdown accelerate your plans?

Paul Iliffe: We didn’t have any plans! We needed to keep busy – what else was there to do?We had lots of songs from over several years that we thought were quite good, so we decided to release them. Initially it was just for us. We had a monkey on our back – all these recordings that we were doing nothing with. We didn’t think anyone was going to buy them!

LW: We released the first single [Cathy Come Home]  in January last year and the rhythm tracks for the new album were recorded before lockdown. If it had been normal times, there might have been pressure to start gigging and then that might have slowed us down.

It means you now have two albums’ worth of material to play live…

LW: Exactly.

The new album is less psych than the first one, isn’t it?

PI: It’s more poppy.

You told me that the group started out as a Beatles tribute band – three of you have been playing together since 2006. You grew up with Britpop, but you’re all big fans of ‘60s music, aren’t you?

LW: We’ve let go of a lot of things from our childhood and the late ‘90s, but the ‘60s thing has always been there. When I was growing up in Nottingham, my mum and dad had The Beatles’ ‘Red Album’ and ‘Blue Album’ on vinyl – they only had about six albums, including Motown’s Greatest Hits and some Irish folk music.

Luke Williamson

‘We’ve let go of a lot of things from our childhood and the late ‘90s, but the ‘60s thing has always been there’

I always remember listening to The Beatles. When I was 16, I started going out with a girl – I went back to her house, where she lived with her dad. He was a Beatles nut. He had a man cave before man caves were even a thing. In it, he had a projector screen on the wall and the film Yellow Submarine on loop. Not the audio – just the pictures. He also had all The Beatles albums on vinyl and CD, and he smoked weed constantly. It was really surreal.

Has he been immortalised in one of your songs yet?

LW: He hasn’t.

PI: He needs to be.

LW: My girlfriend had to do some college coursework, so I sat with her dad for a bit. He was lovely – a bit too chilled-out – but I started getting into The Beatles. Six months later, I asked my mum and dad for a Beatles album for Christmas. I expected to get the ‘Red Album’ and the ‘Blue Album’ on CD, but I got given Revolver. After nights out, I used to fall asleep listening to it.

Paul Iliffe

‘I was working at a supermarket that started stocking CDs – I nicked a few! I stole Rubber Soul and I really liked it’

PI: I got into Rubber Soul. My parents weren’t into music – there was never music in the house when I was growing up. I was an only child – I discovered music by myself when I was 13 or 14. I got into Britpop, and I knew of The Beatles.

When I started doing a part-time job aged 16, I bought Sgt. Pepper’s on CD from HMV – I hated it! I was working at a supermarket that started stocking CDs – I nicked a few! I stole Rubber Soul and I really liked it – then I went down a Beatles rabbit hole, and I got into Sgt. Pepper’s eventually.

Let’s go back to talking about your albums. How and where did you record them?

LW: It’s as DIY as you can get – we go into the practice room in Loughborough where we rehearse, we make sure we’re tight, and then we record a drum track and the bass in the studio. We take it away and then we do everything else [remotely].

I’ll do my vocals, but most of the mixing and production is done by Paul – I ask him to put his magic on it. I’ll add my rhythm guitar and Paul will add his electric – Luke [Headland] will put keys on it.

PI: I’m the one who’ll say ‘let’s add some glockenspiel or brass’ – the weird stuff.

Where did the title of the new record, Tales From The Great Central Line Volume One, come from? The Great Central Main Line was the last main line railway to be built in Britain during the Victorian period, wasn’t it? It ran from Sheffield, in the North of England, southwards through Nottingham and Leicester to Marylebone, in London…

LW: Where I was living, in Loughborough, there’s still the old Great Central Railway – it’s been kept as it was. It’s around the corner from where we practise, and I had my wedding photos taken there – it’s always been in our minds.

PI: I like the idea of tales, stories, and fables – a song is a story. We like nostalgia – we don’t want to be a pastiche of anything – but we are quite nostalgic as a band and about how things were and how things should be.

‘We do have a lot of songs in the vaults that are named after girls – we did think about having an album full of them. We have lots of weird ideas’

LW: A lot of songs on the new album are tales – at one point we were playing with the idea of them all being letters. We also toyed with the idea of having one side of the album made up of songs that were all girls’ names.

PW: We do have a lot of songs in the vaults that are named after girls – we did think about having an album full of them. We have lots of weird ideas.

Is there a Tales From The Great Central Line Volume Two planned?

LW: We called the album Volume One because The Kinks did Preservation Act 1, and it also leaves it open-ended. There might be a Volume Two. Who knows?

PI: We might be like McCartney and do different volumes spanned over several decades…

LW: Volume Three will be out in 50 years’ time!

Talking of McCartney, and girls’ names… the new album starts with the song (That Girl Called) Mary Jane. Is that a nod to The Beatles’ What’s The New Mary Jane?

PI: Hopefully ours is a better song than that. As much as I love The Beatles, it’s terrible.

LW: Mary Jane was a traditional girls’ name in the ‘60s – I write songs with traditional girls’ names. We’ve kept it nostalgic.

[To Luke] How does your wife feel about you writing lots of songs with other girls’ names in them?

LW: The first time I did it, she said, jokingly, ‘Who’s that then?’ I’ve churned loads of ‘em out now, so I get away with it. I’m not writing them all about one person.

What’s your wife’s name?

LW: Vanessa – her name’s not been used in a song.

PI: The syllables don’t play well…

The second single from the new record, There Before Time, is one of my favourite songs on the album. It has a Zombies feel to it…

LW: That was intentional – we used the same chords as a Zombies song, but we don’t want to give everything away!

Dear Genevieve is another song with a girl’s name in it…

LW: But it’s different from the other songs because that’s my daughter’s name. It’s me talking to her when she was first born – I wrote it as an acoustic song a few years ago.

I’ve also written a song about my other daughter, Lola – she’s named after The Kinks song – and that should be on the third album. Genevieve is also named after a Kinks song – Sweet Lady Genevieve.

On that note, your song Ooh La La is a Kinks-style observational tale about family life and domestic struggles…

LW: Seventy-five per cent of the songs I write nowadays, from a lyrical point of view, are those sort of stories – most of them are based on people I’ve met or characters I’ve seen. Do you know when you see a man who lives 10 doors away from you on your street, but you don’t know his name, and just by looking at him, you picture his life, and you imagine what he does? It’s basically that.

My Maria has a great lead guitar sound – it’s raw and a bit country-rock and skiffle…

LW: Paul championed that one – it had to make the album because it sounded different.

PI: It’s just a good song – it only has four chords, and it goes round. It’s simple – sometimes when you’re writing songs you need to step back and say, ‘less is more’. It has a good melody and structure.

LW: It was written about someone who hurt me…

Early In The Morning is more country-rock, with some honky-tonk piano and a touch of Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da

[Paul laughs].

LW: Funnily enough, Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da wasn’t the song we used as a reference point. Emmitt Rhodes had a song called Tame the Lion, which sounds a bit like Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da. Early In The Morning is us doing a version of Emmitt Rhodes doing a version of Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da.

‘I got away with writing songs featuring other girls’ names by asking my wife to sing on the album – I won her over’

Catch My Breath is a pretty, folky, stripped-down tune. It also has some female backing vocals on it…

LW: That’s my wife, Vanessa. I got away with writing songs featuring other girls’ names by asking her to sing on the album – I won her over.

I think the last three songs: Catch My Breath, Royston’s Lament and Hey Mister are all reflective – they feel like they’re linked thematically. Royston’s Lament is one of my favourites on the record – it’s darker than some of the other songs and it has the feel of Dead End Street by The Kinks, or something by The Coral, The La’s, or Shack. It’s a nostalgic and melancholy song, and it features the line ‘Whatever happened to the community?’

LW: Paul brought that song to the band – he had all the chords, but no words.

PI: I said to Luke, it’s about being old – off you go…

Hey Mister is a song about regret – it looks back on someone’s life after they’ve died…

LW: It’s a character song – I wrote it after I heard a story about a guy in Loughborough who’d died. No-one had gone to his funeral – it was a sad story. People then say, ‘oh – he was a nice bloke.’ Well, why did they wait until it was too late? When was alive, he was a bit of a loner and he sat on his own, in the corner of the bar.

To come and do this interview, you’ve rented a cottage in the countryside and you’re staying overnight. I know you’ve brought your guitars. Does that mean your next record is going to be a pastoral, psych-pop concept record?

LW: We’ve already got the plan – it will be a concept album.

PI: Hopefully it will be out this time next year. I think the songs we’re doing for the third album are a bit more psychedelic – we don’t want to be the same.

Your first album had a ship on the cover, the new one has a train. Will the third album have a plane on it?

LW: For the next one, we’re going into space…


Tales From The Great Central Line Volume One by The Mariners is out now on CD / digital platforms –  a vinyl version will be available later this year.


• When The Mariners visited Buckinghamshire, Say It With Garage Flowers took them record shopping in The Record Shop, Amersham and Collector’s Paradise, in Chesham. Here’s what they bought:

Paul Iliffe’s purchases:


 Luke Williamson’s vinyl finds:


And finally, to say thanks to The Mariners for coming to see us, Say It With Garage Flowers bought them this record in the brilliant Chapter Two community bookshop, in Chesham. They were, ahem, chuffed to bits.

Power pop to the people


Here at Say It With Garage Flowers we’re massive power pop fans and we always get excited when we get to hear new releases by UK-based label Sugarbush Records, which specialises in rare and limited edition vinyl, including power pop, psych and cool ‘60s stuff.

Over the last few weeks, Sugarbush has really been spoiling us, so we thought we’d do a quick roundup of some of its latest records.

Detroit singer-songwriter Nick Piunti’s superb 2015 album, Beyond The Static, has been issued on vinyl for the first time – it’s limited to only 250 copies on blue vinyl.

We interviewed Nick when the record was first released last year and you can read all about the making of it here.

Beyond The Static was the follow-up to Nick’s critically acclaimed album 13 In My Head, which we described as ‘an instant power pop classic’.

Fans of 13 In My Head will definitely love Beyond The Static. As we said when it first came out, it’s more of the same – infectious power pop songs with big guitars, harmonies and strong melodies.

There’s also a country influence on the song Six Bands and some vintage New Wave synth on Heart Stops Beating. Nick’s been compared to singer-songwriters such as Matthew Sweet, Tom Petty and Paul Westerberg.

Don’t forget to check out Nick’s latest album, Trust Your Instincts, which is currently available on CD. We’re hoping for a vinyl release of it on Sugarbush sometime soon…


If you like Nick Piunti, you’ll also dig Dom Mariani’s Homespun Blues & Greens. Out on Sugarbush, this ‘lost’ album by the former frontman of Australian garage rock band The Stems is released on vinyl for the first time.

Limited to 300 ‘deep blue’ copies worldwide, it was recorded over a two-year period in the early noughties, but slipped under the radar when it came out in 2004.

Mixed by Mitch Easter (R.E.M and Velvet Crush) it’s top-notch power pop, with fuzzy riffs, crunching chords and some great hooks.

The title track has a brilliant soulful brass arrangement, gorgeous ballad Prove has cool ’60s-style backing vocals and tinges of country rock, thanks to its Faces-style guitar licks, while space-themed Yuri is, er, out of this world, and Bus Ride is power pop perfection.


Finally this month, Sugarbush has another vinyl first – Irish band Pugwash’s second album, Almanac. Originally released in 2002, it’s now available on orange or white vinyl – there are 250 copies of each.

Pugwash’s main man, Thomas Walsh, is clearly a man who’s in love with vintage pop music – even  Almanac’s title is a nod to The Kinks.

For the most part, Walsh channels mid-to late ’60s Beatles and ELO – Everything We Need sounds like George Harrison meets Jeff Lynne, while the lovely acoustic ballad Sunrise Sunset could’ve come off  The White Album.

Keep Movin’ On reminds us of The Hollies and Apples sounds like English eccentrics XTC – it’s no surprise that, in 2002, XTC’s Andy Partridge said it was the most exciting track he’d heard all year.

Almanac is a Fab album and Pugwash are plundering pop pirates. Ahoy there, me hearties…

For more information on all of these albums – and to order them –  please visit http://www.sugarbushrecords.com/