UK band THE HONEY POT first appeared back in 2012 with their debut album “To the Edge of the World”, and have since issued some singles and EPs prior to 2016, when they reappeared with two studio albums. “Ascending Scales” is the most recent of these, a double album which was released by UK vinyl specialist label Fruits de Mer Records.
In the label history of Fruits de Mer Records, this production was a special one. Their release number 100, and they challenged The Honey Pot to make this production something special. Which it is. It is a double album, featuring both originals and cover songs, this latter aspect being a specialty of the label and a key reason for why the label started up in the first place, and in addition to that a whole lot of guest musicians have been invited to participate. Just about two dozen of them to be precise, ranging from musicians from some of the classic psychedelic rock bands to contemporary musicians active in the progressive rock and psychedelic rock environment today. Quite a few of the latter with an existing attachment to Fruits de Mer Records, as might be expected.
With psychedelic rock mentioned, this double album is a nice little gem in that specific territory. That the opening track is called 1969 gives a strong and clear indication of what this album is all about: Psychedelic rock that looks back to that specific era as far as, well, just about everything goes. And we’re taken on something of a joyride through the many instances and variations that did exist within this type of music at around that period of time.
Dark, buzzing garage rock oriented escapades have their place here just as much as creations with more of a lighter and more subtle psychedelic sound. Eerie effects laden creations not too far removed from early Hawkwind in style coexist quite nicely with creations of a more acoustic, folk or even pastoral nature. With both male and female lead vocalists sharing that particular spotlight. Sometimes with a more ominous tone, reminding ever so slightly of The Doors on one occasion, but also touching base at times with the harder guitars and organ driven sound of a band like Uriah Heep.
There’s really no use in going into greater detail on all of the 14 songs here, as they provide such variety in sound and style. The common denominator is that all of them are psychedelic to a lesser or greater extent, possibly with a slight exception for the more Americana-tinged notes of concluding track River Runs By, and all of the tracks would have sounded perfectly at home on an album consisting of psychedelic rock dating back to 1969 or thereabouts.
If you love and treasure vintage era psychedelic rock, then The Honey Pot have crafted a pure honey pot (heh!) of music of that specific nature on this double album, their original compositions fitting seamlessly in with the cover tracks featured. An album that merits a good check by vintage era psychedelic rock aficionados.
My rating: 83/100
1969; Solomon Deep; Love Is Green; Dr Crippen’s Waiting Room; Can’t You See the Witch; Half a Memory; Sitting All Alone; I’ve Been So Tired; Time Machine; Lucky Spaceman; Rainy Day Mushroom Pillow; America; Into the Deep; River Runs By