Published Apr 24, 2019King Gizzard & the Lizard Wizard make records that can be described like Friends episodes: "The One With Microtonal Instruments"; "The One They Released for Free"; "The One that Loops Infinitely"; "The One That Features Mild High Club"; "The One With a Ton of Acoustic Instruments."
Their latest, Fishing For Fishies, or "The One Where They Tried to Make a Blues Record," doesn't have as glamourous a gimmick as past efforts. But the band's energy, songwriting and mischievous instinct haven't gone anywhere, resulting in a worthwhile entry into the band's already sprawling catalogue.
Frontman Stu Mackenzie described the record as an attempt at making a blues record, or "a blues-boogie-shuffle-kinda-thing" as he calls it, but their material ended up going on "wild journeys of transformation." "Cyboogie" is "Spirit in the Sky" if it were written for a movie about robots saving the universe, while "Acarine" pairs an odd-time shuffle against nearly three minutes of synth ambience.
"Plastic Boogie" is one of the more exuberant tracks here, with upbeat call-and-response vocals sitting on top of an energetic shuffle. There's a loose, almost party-like atmosphere to the track, and it's a good showcase of how much fun the band is having across the record.
Some of King Gizzard's best work has come as a result of some serious self-imposed constraints, such as creating a seamless, infinitely looping record with Nonagon Infinity or creating a record where all the tracks have the same length, with Quarters! But here, there's no crazy set of restrictions they need to adhere to, nor is there a time crunch like their "five albums in one calendar year" challenge. Fishing for Fishies is the freest the band have sounded in a while, and the record is all the better for it. (ATO Records)