Somewhere, frozen in deep space, is a pop group. They’re called The Original Doo-Wop Spacemen and they make mutated 50s pop music – somewhere between the great American songbook and classic American jukebox tunes, then dipped in classic romance film scores before being lathered up with prog-rock, jazz and psychedelia.
They’re the brainchild of Oliver Taylor, frontman of Trudy and The Romance. Or maybe they’re the characterised manifestation of several real life experiences. In either case, The Original Doo-Wop Spacemen are here, and they’re playing on Trudy and The Romance’s debut album ‘Sandman’ – a cosmic, kaleidoscopic, merry-go-round of a record that is bursting with bright ambition.
Really, this could be called a concept album, especially given the introduction of The Original Doo-Wop Spacemen. “I’ve asked people and they don’t think they would pick up on it. But you write it for the diehards, don’t you. Twenty years down the line someone will have this album on a Top 20 Concept Album list, and that’s how people will know,” laughs Olly, underpinning the inherent humour of the work.
However, while the intricate details of the narrative might be buried in the lyrics, under layers of fuzz or light-years away, there is certainly a story here – a specific conceptual idea. It involves the characters Little Johnny, frontman of The Original Doo-Wop Spacemen, and Sweet Emma, his love. We’re introduced to these two on opening track “My Baby’s Gone Away” just as Johnny skips town and dreams big, setting up his future career with the Spacemen.