Birth Of Joy - Get Well Album Review

Dutch psych rockers Birth Of Joy turn back the clock to 1971.

Birth of Joy Get Well Album artwork

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If Alice’s Adventures In Wonderland (the dark, Tim Burton film version) were a band, it would sound like Birth Of Joy.

Or at least that’s the kind of experience we had with this tour de force of clamouring, intoxicating psych. On the one hand, Get Well is very 60s (think Nuggets or The Electric Prunes). The retro horror-show organ and sumptuous prog rock layers of tracks like Carabiner place you firmly outside any time pre-1971.

There’s even a touch of The Doors in the head-swirling instrumental Midnight Cruise, had The Doors jammed with early Black Sabbath. Like Purson and Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats, this Dutch band pursue a religiously nostalgic ethos, and yet there are qualities that place Get Well in a more current camp.

On Hands Down, Kevin Stunnenberg’s voice adds a youthful, present-day feel to the psychy freakery. Opener Blisters throws you off-guard with a cacophony of post-punk noisiness (a trait that crops up throughout and adds a nicely anarchic, grungy dimension to the 60s-isms), and the spacious Numb plays rather like a modern, alt-rock take on Dark Side…-era Floyd. A faithful yet revitalising interpretation of old school psychedelia.

Polly Glass
Deputy Editor, Classic Rock

Polly is deputy editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she writes and commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage), and has interviewed rock's biggest and newest names. She also contributes to Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. Elsewhere she's had work published in The Musician, delicious. magazine (opens in new tab) and others, and written biographies for various album campaigns. In a previous life as a women's magazine junior she interviewed Tracey Emin and Lily James – and wangled Rival Sons into the arts pages. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.