Brian Jonestown Massacre Tepid Peppermint Wonderland: A Retrospective

What’s to say about the Brian Jonestown Massacre that hasn’t already been said? Their leader is a crazy motherfucker named Anton, who really is the only stable member of the band, since the revolving door policy has seen more than 40 members come and go. However, stable is certainly not the word to describe his personality. Now a household name thanks to his erratic behaviour in the popular documentary DiG!, Newcombe will hopefully find it easier to peddle his shambolic, but often brilliant psych-jam-jangle-rock. Tepid Peppermint Wonderland does a fine job in representing BJM’s exhausting discography of ten albums and numerous singles and EPs. Spreading out the tracks over the various periods and incarnations of the band, it’s a real mishmash of music that includes a few live and unreleased goods as well. Always one for quantity over quality, Newcombe’s work has suffered from his ability to write and record a song in minutes and it does show in parts here. However, the biggest disappointment is the absence of music from Strung Out In Heaven, their most polished album that brought them closest to breaking through (obtaining rights from TVT was likely not doable). Though it has its flaws, TPW is a good, quick source for experiencing the music behind the madness of one of rock’s most eccentric geniuses. (Tee Pee)