Johnny Moped as it turns out, are quite an enigma.
It’s been no less than 38 years since their debut album Cycledelic came out (and get this, the publishers of The Guinness Encyclopedia of Popular Music, named Cycledelic as one of the best fifty punk albums of all-time) the three original members of the band: Johnny Moped, Slimy Toad and Dave Berk are back with a new long player.
The press release advises that it’s 16 new songs and a few live favourites that were never recorded back in the day. This follows their first 7” for 37 years released on Damaged Goods last year - ‘Ain’t No Rock N’ Roll Rookie' impressively hit no. 3 in the UK vinyl chart.
As the album kicks in I’m quite taken aback. It actually sounds quite good. I really had no expectations whatsoever; as although I’ve been aware of Johnny Moped for a long time, I’ve never been that bothered to listen to them until this landed in my email box from the lovely Damaged Goods.
Opening track ‘It’s A Real Cool Baby’ is spot on, and definitely the standout track. Reminiscent in parts of The Saints, Radio Birdman and Turbonegro; all driving guitars and attitude. Therein follows a bunch of other songs of the old skool punk variety, that to be honest kinda pass me by until ‘Paint My Aubergine’ which is odd, melodic, and bordering on psychedelic. There’s definitely not a lack of humour, that’s for sure. Unfortunately, nothing else really grabs me, and I found myself doing some domestic chores throughout. As much as I want to like this LP, I feel it lacks energy. It’s very well produced for sure, and if this kinda punk / indie rock floats your boat, then you may be in for a treat. Don’t let me put you off.
A second single ‘Real Cool Baby’ is due out late January in two different vinyl colours.
Johnny Moped will be hitting the road in April for an album launch show at the Lexington in London with more dates in the UK and Europe to follow.
It's A Real Cool Baby is available from amazon.