We first witnessed The Aleph in late 2019 when they supported Richard Dawson on a rainy Saturday Night at Parr Street Studios.
Mixing a pantomime pop hybrid amid a backdrop of art deco-inspired videos and utilising old world technology, there is simply no other band in Liverpool doing it like The Aleph.
On the night it felt something like listening to Frank Sinatra through the middle of an acid trip. Their 2017, the aptly titled Pantominpe EP pays testament to such claims (in addition, the band also released the Sunspots EP in 2018).
The duo consists of Ex-Easter Island Head’s Benjamin Fair and John Hering – the latter being the culprit for that fantastic piano tour-de-force on EEIH’s excellent 2020 single, Lodge.
The Aleph are a different concern and the Cheshire Cat EP adds yet another dimension to their odd-pop framework.
Mixed and mastered by Land Trance’s Andrew PM Hunt, the eponymous track starts things off . With guest vocals from Dale Whitfield and Poppy Fair, it’s an upbeat psychedelic pop number about Cheshire cats by railway tracks and throwing stones at leisure centres. Yup.
The finest cut, Strange Motorways, follows – a Grandaddy-inspired odyssey about the illuminating facets of such thoroughfares, with more off-the-wall references including rainbows flowing through veins and snakes eating their own tails.
The Morning Commute is a futuristic instrumental that would prove a lovely foil for some of Stereolab’s more accessible work, while Multicolour Atom Bomb draws on the pantomime leanings of The Aleph‘s earlier works. If anything, it forms a kindred spirit with Dawson’s lockdown project, Bulbils.
The sunny ’60s crate-digging jam that is Boy ends the EP in a delightful manner, pushing against the chilly climes we currently find ourselves in during this time of year.
The Cheshire Cat EP is yet another showcase of inventiveness from a duo that isn’t afraid to think outside the box. It’s futuristic pop music in every sense and the first fine local release of 2021.
Cheshire Cat EP is available now. Purchase from The Aleph’s Bandcamp page.