Back in the heady days of Britpop, Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci was conveniently lumped into the scene by lazy music scribes looking for any guitar band from Old Blighty who could be wrapped into the trendy “Cool Britannia” packaging. Thing is, Gorky’s never fit inside the wrapping. There may occasionally have been Kinks traces on a few of the band’s singles, but these Welsh boys always cast a far wider net, with Nashville country and The Fall just as important to their sound as Ray Davies. Well, Britpop has largely been confined to the used bargain bins for the last two years and Gorky’s is, thankfully, no longer on a major label and can fully exist and thrive as its true eclectic self now.
Spanish Dance Troup is the first fruits of Gorky’s newfound freedom. It’s a leisurely, but never lazy, collection of mainly acoustic tunes brimming with glorious melodies and inventive instrumentation. Digging deeply into British folk sounds, while more fully embracing Gorky’s country influences, the new album sneaks up slowly and draws you in. Far more pastoral and subtle than Beta Band and Gomez, Gorky’s nonetheless shares with these bands an experimental spirit and an obvious disdain for genre distinctions.