First things first. The album cover of Roll ‘Em Smoke ‘Em Put Another Line Out (7⁄10) is truly memorable: a grainy live photo of Patto in full flight, with frontman Mike Patto wielding a tambourine the size of an Olympic discus, it fair reeks of loon pants and patchouli oil, and transports you right back to the heart of the early 1970s. But – like Patto’s entire career, in fact – this, their third album, from ‘72, promises much but delivers little, bizarrely titled tracks such as Flat Footed Woman and Loud Green Song being an uneasy and unfocused amalgam of heavy rock, jazz and blues.
Mike Patto – let’s call him a hollerin’ Paul Rodgers – certainly deserved better, but, Boxer, the band he formed later, were emphatically not the answer. It’s difficult to listen to any of the songs on ‘lost’ fourth full-length Monkeys [sic] Bum (5⁄10) without the image of a moist bulbous simian posterior springing to mind. Billed jokingly as ‘the world’s first ever scratch and sniff album’ it is thankfully an odor-free zone; allow us to steer you in the direction of Melanie’s Garden In The City for a full-on fragrant experience. Like a visit to the glorified jumble sale that is TK Maxx, these albums are all over the shop.