Skip to main content

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

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 is Features Editor at Classic Rock magazine, where she commissions regular pieces and longer reads (including new band coverage) and writes a few things. She also writes for Louder, Prog and Metal Hammer, and talks about songs on the 20 Minute Club podcast. In her spare time she writes fiction and cooks.