A Dada Plan Is Free (Independent)
I’ve been saying Malcolm Jack is a genius for years, and it looks as though the former Sun Wizard and Capitol 6 frontman’s secret may be out with his newest project. Dada Plan sees Jack hooking up with Colin Cowan on upright bass, Dave Biddle on saxophone, Matt Krysko on synth, and Justin Williams on congas. Josh Wells (Black Mountain, Lightning Dust) recorded the results on analogue tape. A Dada Plan Is Free sounds like ’80s outsider pop, with retro drum-machine programming and synth sounds from Krysko’s Roland Juno-60, but it’s no pale homage. There is a deeper meaning at work here, a haunting, dystopian tinge to its chill metropolitan grooves inspired by Brian Eno and Robert Wyatt.
Jack’s lyrics hit the sweet spot between Syd Barrett’s lysergic-burnout poetry and Buffy Sainte-Marie’s spiritual social activism throughout the 10 tracks on this album, each averaging over four-and-a-half minutes with rarely a repeated word. His cerebral bohemian imagery flows as if it’s stream-of-consciousness, incorporating covers of White Fence and Aceyalone into his world, while the instrumentals are repetitive but tastefully and intriguingly layered, rewarding repeat listenings as new sounds and phrases emerge from the vignettes. This should be big, like Destroyer big.