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A Scandal In Bohemia

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Album Review

Recording with a stable backup band, the Jazz Butcher here puts together a top-shelf diamond of a record that is filled with excellent, memorable songs. Diverse styles are deftly referenced here and the lyrics are focused, wry, and often killer clever. The sound quality is a big improvement over that of his prior release, In Bath of Bacon. The drivingly tuneful "Southern Mark Smith" and "Girlfriend" are in a ringing folk-pop style. "I Need Meat" is a jumpy, neo-rockabilly number. "Marnie" deftly mixes funk and ethnic influences. "My Desert" is essentially a sea chantey or campfire singalong with ironically downbeat lyrics. "Caroline Wheeler's Birthday Present" is a fuzzed-out hard rock parody with irreverently Dylan-esque "I Shall Be Free" style lyrics. "Just like Betty Page" is an uptempo, acoustic guitar based, top-tapping delight. And the wonderfully inventive "Real Men" utilizes a bizarre accompaniment of thudding drums, rumbling bass, and sparkling glockenspiel surrounding hilarious lyrics that attack macho attitudes. Don't pass up this album if you can find it.

Customer Reviews

Smart rock

I owned this on vinyl and wore the grooves off. Delighted to find it on iTunes. Witty lyrics, great pop hooks. Soul Happy Hour is one of the greatest happy/sad drinking tunes of all time.

The Butcher defined my youth

A truly under-appreciated '80's artist. You owe yourself to give a listen to both 'Distressed Gentlefolk' and 'A Scandal in Bohemia'.


Formed: 1982 in Oxford, England

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '80s, '90s, '10s

The Jazz Butcher was the vehicle of prolific singer/songwriter Pat Fish, an archetypal British eccentric whose sharp observational wit and melodic gifts navigated the group through over a decade of constant lineup shifts, stylistic mutations, and even a series of name changes, which found the band performing variously -- and apparently randomly -- under such titles as the Jazz Butcher Conspiracy and the Jazz Butcher & His Sikkorskis from Hell. Fish was born Patrick Huntrods in London in 1957, and...
Full bio
A Scandal In Bohemia, The Jazz Butcher
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Customer Ratings