If 4AD were launched today as a dance label, this would be their signature release. It’s a simple as that. Ballad of JC Quinn runs along on pulsing dance grooves, the sort of thing that Bristol’s underground scene revelled in during the 90’s, but then swathes itself in layers of shimmering sonics. The background beats provide just enough weight to stop the whole thing from flying too far out of sight and the less defined sound of the song is a celebration of shimmering dream-pop, trance-state ambience and hazy kaleidoscopes of sound. Add to that Amy Herring’s simmering and gloriously understated vocals and you have the perfect next chapter in the story of dream-pop.
Ahead of their 5th album, Zsa Zsa, which it will come as no surprise to many to find John Fryer on co-production duties, the band release this heart-felt dedication to an actor who they got to know when he moved to their base of operations Charlotte NC. Sadly no longer with us but he is immortalised in this chiming and charming track.
Whilst it is easy to look back to find comparisons for any music, The Mystery Plan sound like they are building the future rather than revelling in the past and with a work load which has seen them release 10 eps and albums in as many years, it is clear that they are heading into that future with some intent. Ballad of JC Quinn is a gorgeous piece of music and whilst I wait for their latest full-length release to appear, it looks like I have a lot of catching up to via via their back catalogue. I suggest that you all do the same. perhaps starting here….