Get Well Soon – The Scarlet Beast O'Seven Heads (Cityslang)

Get Well Soon – The Scarlet Beast O’Seven Heads (Cityslang)


Get Well Soon, you have no right! No have no right naming an album ‘The Scarlet Beast O’Seven Heads’ – a title more suited to an Iron Maiden b-side, then giving it so much sexy funeral jazz and mournful mandolin.

The Brothers Grimm by way of a Germanic Arcade Fire, this is a beguiling and startlingly emotive listen. An upbeat record only in the sense of grinning in the dark, this sounds like what would happen if a Tim Burton soundtrack evolved to become a fully-fledged alt.choir rock army. Prologue ‘Prologue’is a melancholic lullaby introducing the record’s swollen heart. Gorgeous highlight ‘Disney’ (fitting, as TSBOSH has a thread throughout of a pitch-perfect arrangement from a 1940s film from that very company), builds into an enveloping crescendo of crashing drums and choirs.

Other songs, such as ‘You Cannot Cast Out the Demons (You Might as Well Dance)’ have beats to counter the tender and vigorous instrumental lovemaking heard as standard. Equally lovely is ‘A Gallows’, which belies its title by being a surprisingly chipper, and ‘Just Like Henry Darger’s campfire noir stomper – another highlight.

The only notably bad points are when the record drifts into the soundtrack of a freaky, woodland creature roleplay, where everyone is dressed in spandex and acts out Dragonforce songs. OR SO I CAN ONLY IMAGINE.

Also, ‘The Kids Today’s silly, 80s “spoooooooky” Casio stabbing chorus could be the soundtrack to Cure/Echo and the Bunnymen-lite nighttime brooding, or it could just as easily be heard on the Ghost Train at a funfair in the sticks.

At its most bonkers and indulgent all you can say as that it sounds like Saxon (or something else Alan Partridge probably listens to) made by people in sensible sandals and pastel shirts – which you’ll hopefully admit still sounds fairly awesome. The lyrics depend on how high your wince reflex reacts to howlers such as “The whole world’s going to hell… daddy ain’t paying my rent no more”, as heard on ‘Roland, I feel you’ – but this mostly doesn’t sour things, as the arrangements and overall ‘ohm-bee-oance’ are the stars here. The latter has a absolutely batshit video by way of an apology.

The Arcade Fire comparisons are justified only in that these are tales told among the embers of a dark purple forest instead of among the suburbs. Get Well Soon have an uncanny ability to make the darkness before the dawn seem like a solar eclipse, or that the light at the end of the tunnel’s actually a train.
A record full of beautiful sleep songs which left me feeling brave and moved – and, most potently, also ready to don my suit of metallic purple and green armour and go avenge the ancient prophesy given to me by the mighty stoat king Sao’snaaar.


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God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.