Skip to main content

Regal Worm: Use And Ornament

Henry Fool chap lays down the gauntlet on his love letter to prog.

When we first put Use And Ornament on the Prog hi-fi, our reviews editor said, “We could do with some more of this!” Henry Fool/I Monster man Jarrod Gosling’s love letter to prog is a Mellotron-moulded jazz-folk-pop beastie with more ideas stuffed into its nine tracks than Wikipedia on psilocybin.

Initially there’s a Soft Machine/Canterbury style about Apple Witch and Klara Till Slutet. But sandwiched in-and-around are suites Confessions From A Deep And Warm Hibernaculum and 10-part centerpiece 6:17pm – The Aunt Turns Into An Ant, taking giddying Crimson, Kafka and Lewis Carroll-like directions.

The virtuosic Gosling backs his tsunami of notions by playing most of the instruments here, aided by a roll call of distinctive guests from sax ace Mick Somerset-Ward to Essex singer-songwriter Kevin Pearce. At times the influence of soundtrack composers like Roy Budd or Ronnie Hazlehurst collide with Radiophonic Workshop experimentalism, but the Proustian familiarity guides you happily through another crazy sonic passage.

Gosling’s production, honed at his Sheffield studio, Pig View, is stunning. So hear, hear: more of this, please!

Jo is a journalist, podcaster, event host and music industry lecturer with 23 years in music magazines since joining Kerrang! as office manager in 1999. But before that Jo had 10 years as a London-based gig promoter and DJ, also working in various vintage record shops and for the UK arm of the Sub Pop label as a warehouse and press assistant. Jo's had tea with Robert Fripp, touched Ian Anderson's favourite flute (!), asked Suzi Quatro what one wears under a leather catsuit, and invented several ridiculous editorial ideas such as the regular celebrity cooking column for Prog, Supper's Ready. After being Deputy Editor for Prog for five years and Managing Editor of Classic Rock for three, Jo is now Associate Editor of Prog, where she's been since its inception in 2009, and a regular contributor to Classic Rock. She continues to spread the experimental and psychedelic music-based word amid unsuspecting students at BIMM Institute London, hoping to inspire the next gen of rock, metal, prog and indie creators and appreciators.