Wax Mekanix – Psychotomimetic EP

Wax Mekanix – Psychomimetic EP
Electric Talon Records
Release Date: 08/09/23
Running Time: 21:02
Review by Dark Juan

Good afternoon, gentle readers. I am Dark Juan, and I am babysitting. The folly of having malleable young minds in my “care” when I have such sights to show them. The joy of flesh tearing, the deep satisfaction of the knife tearing its way through subcutaneous fat and muscle into supple, glorious flesh and the welters of blood splashing its crimson delight up the walls, and the warmth and sensuousness of plunging my hands into open wounds and the sublime feeling as I curl my fingers around pulsating, throbbing organs. When I remove them and watch as life leaves them, shuddering to a juddering halt in my claret-soaked hands… No pulsation from the heart anymore as it is clasped in my grasp and the light of life leaving the eyes as I watch them closely and tell them how much I love them…

Dark Juan is actually looking after his grandchildren. They are good kids, my granddaughter being something of an artist in her own right, and a talented relater of tales as well. We are not entirely convinced she is entirely human, wondering whether the fey have got to her in vitro as she is a child of nature and fantasy and is frequently to be found cradling frogs and the like and with half a forest in her hair. She was very excited last weekend to meet fabric sculpting genius Mister Finch in Stafford in the company of Mrs Dark Juan and to be educated in his eldritch arts. Dark Juan himself trotted off to RAF Cosford to stare at many aeroplanes. Unaccountably, he has not been able to convince anyone in his family to submit to his will and be wildly entertained by the three-hour slideshow he has prepared about the equipment in the bomb bay of the Avro Lincoln and its subsequent service during the Malayan Emergency. His Tiny Satanic Majesty, Mossy Boggart Grimshaw Cravensworth III is begging for sweets and Mrs Dark Juan is busily creating yet another eldritch horror in fabric while our eldest grandson is machine gunning hordes of enemies to death in his bedroom. The youngest grandson is desperately trying to interest Mrs Dark Juan in Minecraft and not succeeding by showing her YouTube videos of stories people have made using it and Mrs Dark Juan is feigning interest and failing miserably at it, although grandchild 3 is being very persistent and trying hard in the face of notable adult adversity and disinterest to create interest in a bunch of 8-bit blocks in the vague approximation of the shape of a shark. He is not notably succeeding.

Waxim “Wax” Ulysses Mekanix is the name of the artist I am attempting to listen to right now, his new offering “Psychotomimetic” being the album that is whizzing round on the flower power Platter Of Splatter™ and as this artist has not passed before Dark Juan’s interested… interest before, we are off on a new musical adventure together, gentle readers.

The record opens with ‘Pillars Of Creation’ which has a very familiar melody in it that Dark Juan can’t place which has irritated your correspondent mightily, but it is a glorious, Proggy, purely Psychedelic romp with surprisingly heavy guitars and vocals that can only be described as idiosyncratic. It appears Wax dropped industrial quantities of acid and then launched himself headfirst straight into the part of his studio marked “Vocal Effects” and then hit every single button and cranked everything to the max. It is quite spectacularly over the top to the point where it is fucking orbiting the planet and Dark Juan fucking loves it. ‘Once Upon A Lie’ is slightly more restrained, underpinned with acoustic guitar, but with Eastern-sounding electric guitar breaks and vocals that are not quite as demented as the opening song. Both the opening songs strongly reference the origins of Metal and Hard Rock with a strong focus on melody. ‘Shrew’s Fiddle’ carries on this vein, with extremely lush vocal harmonies and that strong psilocybin-fuelled Psychedelic edge on the solos and the guitar work, but this time with a Country kind of feel on the intro. Immediate influences (it should be pointed out that Wax Mekanix is a founding member of US Cult Rockers Nitro) appear to be the likes of The Mamas and Papas, Gentle Giant, Mountain, Ten Years After and any number of LSD-taking mentalists with an admixture of Country (‘Two Left Feet’ is almost an out and out Country song) and a soupçon of Bob Mould’s Sugar chucked in there for good measure (‘Jeremy Hillary’ amply demonstrates this with its languid, liquid tempo and guitar work, which is rather heavier than the vocal, which is clean and melodious).

Wax is more than just a straight-ahead Rocker though. ‘Key To The End Of The World’ is a heartfelt ditty that would not be out of place on a film soundtrack – starting with a countdown in English and Russian but being a fairly epic tune that would be underpinning scenes where the protagonist is doubting himself and what he is doing. The record closes with ‘Look At You Now’, which is a fucking ballad. Dark Juan is not a fan of ballads and normally hits the skip button faster than a pissed off cobra strikes an irritating human, but as I am reviewing this record to let you know whether you should buy it, I am listening to it. You ought to be grateful. All soulful crooning over electric piano, it marks a massive sea change from the dippy, trippy Hard Rock that has come before and offers a view into the (possibly sober at this point) soul of the man. Some people will see it as a welcome break from the madness that has gone before it. Dark Juan does not agree and considers this song as a bit of a damp squib to end the album on, especially when it starts with such brio and amphetamine-fuelled energy. 

In conclusion then – very much a record of two halves. When you start an album with the likes of ‘Pillars Of Creation’, which is one of the most out-to-lunch opening gambits Dark Juan has ever heard (and is also fucking brilliant), you had better be confident as you don’t want the rest of the record to drop below that high watermark, and while the album as a whole is a really enjoyable listen, it suffers from the simple fact that Wax Mekanix shot his bolt too early with a classic tune, and then its steadily downhill until we slink out deferentially in a bout of post-coital misery back to our miserable, work-dominated life which is devoid of all joy. Which is a shame because the man is massively talented with a sense of humour the size of Nebraska.

The Patented Dark Juan Blood Splat Rating System is a bit depressed after the come down from listening to this record and awards Wax Mekanix 7/10 for a record that would have worked much better if the tracks had been re-ordered. 

01. Pillars Of Creation
02. Once Upon A Lie
03. Shrew’s Fiddle
04. Two Left Feet
05. Jeremy Hillary
06. Key To The End Of The World
07. Look At You Now

Wax Mekanix – Everything


Disclaimer: This review is solely the property of Dark Juan and Ever Metal. It is strictly forbidden to copy any part of this review, unless you have the strict permission of both parties. Failure to adhere to this will be treated as plagiarism and will be reported to the relevant authorities.