Green Pajamas: To the End of the Sea
Jeff Kelly and The Green Pajamas have been making great records since 1984. Their 1886 release entitled Book of Hours is a psyche-pop masterpiece. They have been evolving since, releasing one intriguing work after another. Yet, it’s a cover song they’re best known for.
Material Issue had a hit in the 90’s with the Green Pajamas masterpiece “Kim The Waitress”. It seems that many I’ve spoken with have been under the impression that this was a Jim Ellison original. Point of fact, this one was written by Jeff Kelly. If you’re not already familiar with his work, I encourage you to delve into the Green Pajamas’ extensive catalog. The new one, To the End of the Sea, may be as good a place to start as any.
With To the End of The Sea, Kelly and company tell the story of a lighthouse keeper and a mysterious woman he finds on the beach. Hearkening back to the best psych bands of the 60’s, The Pajamas use backwards guitars, cellos and recording techniques to create a mysterious soundscape that works remarkably well for this kind of storytelling exercise.
Most importantly, they’ve managed to weave in some great pop songs. “When Juliet Smiles” is as good as any single this year, with its chiming guitars, trippy mood and hooky chorus. It’s hippy heaven. “Ten Million Light Years Away”, “Big Black Storm” and “Over There” all share a similar formula, employing a 60’s psychedelic sensibility, engaging melodies and remarkable musicianship.
To The End Of The Sea is more of a rock opera than other Green Pajamas records. If rock operas aren’t your thing but you want to become more familiar with the band’s work, I suggest you start with a best of collection entitled Indian Winter. However, if you’re looking for something more contemporary and aren’t turned off by the rock opera thing, I recommend you check out To The End of The Sea. Get this one at Green Monkey Records or Kool Kat Musik.