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Acolytes Action Squad - Winkle Time

This is an odd one. Winkle Time with Acolytes Action Squad is a lo-fi exploratory work that traipses into improv, experimental, noise and folk in the course of its 11 tracks. There is a certain playfulness to it, and it appears to hinge around 4 loosely crafted songs, with varying degrees of effectiveness. 'Music For Perspex' features a melange of female and male voices delivering a list of psychological / physical ailments and afflictions in a stilted, almost archaic, nursery sing along. It's mildly perplexing but nothing compared to the woeful 'Against Old Masters' which goes from screechy tones and simple flute melodies to an idiotic nursery rhyme type of thing with a theme about orphans and murder. An almost retarded delivery makes this one excruciating. Where that fails, however, 'Letters to the Master' is quite wondrous. A quietly comforting forlorn female voice sings a ballad, almost a cappella except for the faint hum of environmental sounds. It's eventually soaked up by a percussive jazzy piece. That's the thing here, Acolytes Action Squad keep going off at tangents from the plucked string of the opener, the short hip-hop interlude and the smattering of tones, drones and tape splurge that comprise 'Winkle Time Itself'. Later on the Sheffield duo, The Essence and Ditchus, team up with Turkees for some primitive acoustic tunes merged with chirping birds and the sounds of all sorts of zoo animals. Things get back on an even keel on the experimental balladry of 'Vasos and Uuvas - The Legend of Black Canvas' before bowing out with flute melodies and buzzing lo-fi electronic noise. For all its component parts, it all hangs together quite well, and even if it does possess a peculiar charm and innocence it really is difficult to pin down. If it helps both members of Acolytes Action Squad were once part of Hot Snack, and The Essence currently plays with Broken Blackbird Ensemble. An odd one for sure, released in an edition of 350 copies in hand-made sleeves with colour insert. For more information go to or