“The freak's flyin solo.” Basically Josh from DIÄT and Heavy Metal wrote some songs and then recorded them on 4-track over a few loooong nights last summer with the help of a wheezing drum-machine and fellow HM mensch Robert. He made a tape of it and passed it to mates as a sort of leaving gift as he prepared to head back to Oz after a blurry half-decade’s stint in Europe. When we heard it we were blown away, and wasted no time in emotionally blackmailing him into letting us press an LP version. So here you have it, the maiden release on our softly-softly shop label (is it softly softly if you say it out loud?), which we started purely so we could give this incredible record the run it deserves. Musically, it's a wry, whimsical, oddly poignant DIY/jangle/part-time-punk micro-odyssey that feels like the introspective, acid-bleary yin to Heavy Metal’s cranked-up hooligan yang. If you’re familiar with Josh’s other bands then you’ll already know what an effortlessly gifted songwriter and guitarist he is, but this set is a world away from DIÄT and HM, actually, although it shares a world-weariness with both, his bittersweet lyrics - and half-sung, half-spoken vocals - perfectly evoking the beauty and banality of life on the lamb, Hearts in Exile, and a sense of reality/normality every day deferred if not defeated. Instead these brittle, self-deprecating but incorrigibly romantic songs put us in mind of Dan Treacy/TVPs, Swell Maps and of course classic fractured Oz/NZ pop from The Clean, Cannanes ++. The whole thing has a diaristic, unaffected, please-itself quality, as if it was made entirely for its own sake with no real audience in mind - which, essentially, it was. Tunes like ‘Baker Man’, 'Next Time I Fall In Love, Man' and ‘Good For Nothing Man’ have quickly become cast-iron anthems round here. Edition of not very many. Man.