The Rocking Magpie


Angus Crowne
Unobservant Idiot
Penguin Monkey Records

Hot Rats! It’s Only Super Cool Post-Punk Ukulele Rock & Roll.

Angus Crowne’s previous album SHAG RUG came at just the right time to ‘cheer me up’ after listening to a myriad of winsome singer-songwriters; and coincidentally UNOBSERVANT IDIOT finds me similarly contemplating life, love and the current political climate; and Heaven knows I’m miserable now. So; what better way to cheer me up than another hefty dose of quirky ukulele fronted Rock & Roll?
Don’t worry dear reader; Angus Crowne ain’t no comedy act; he’s pure Rock & Roll; it’s just he uses the ukulele as his main instrument and isn’t afraid to use a melody or just a damn catchy to carry his well thought out stories along.
What’s not to like about an album that starts with the singer proclaiming “It’s in the groove man!”? Nothing; is the correct answer ; and Crowne’s tongue in cheek self-depreciating love song Simple Street, somehow captures the magic of both Jonathan Richman and The Barenaked Ladies and then some.
I have no idea where Angus Crowne fits in to today’s pantheon of genres; but he’s one sharp songwriter ……..with Baby, Baby being a respectful nod back to the Rock & Roll crooners of the early 1960’s yet the title track Unobservant Idiot is pure ironical Post-Power Pop from the late 1980’s!
There are plenty of thoughtful and intriguing songs tucked away here; none more so than Faded Glances and Snickerdoodle Girl; which is just the type of quirky song I expected to hear on OGWT and then discuss at length the following day at school, as we tried to uncover the mysteries of life.
It’s not the first time I’ve expressed my love for leftfield music; and that’s exactly what Angus Crowne delivers in bucket-loads; with three simply outstanding tracks; the bass laden Walking In LA, a delightful Until I Met You; which is probably my Favourite Song here, and hey man the Jazz-Rock Thrash of Harold Q Le Bough, which closes the album and is undeniably my Favourite Song here by a trillion miles!
It’s all too easy and perhaps even lazy of me to compare and contrast Angus Crowne with the likes of Jonathan Richman, Barenaked Ladies and……. dare I say it………. even Frank Zappa. Yep; imagine if Frank had decided to make an all out Pop Album; it might sound a lot like UNOBSERVANT IDIOT, but first and foremost Angus Crowne is Angus Crowne; and the musical world is a lot better for having him in it.
Released July 5th 2019