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the maharajas-I'm Crackin' Up

A Third Opinion is indeed the Maharajas’ third album, and one that finds them very much under the thrall of moody minor-keyed ’60s garage bands with an occasionally psychedelic bent. If these fellows haven’t played their Chocolate Watch Band and Standells records to death, it would be a big surprise, such is the similarity in the vibe. As tough, tight reverence of these kind of influences (you can also throw in some Paul Revere & the Raiders, Sonics, and Max Frost & the Troopers’ “Shape of Things to Come”), it’s very well executed. It’s simmering with general hurt, frustration, and determination to surmount same, though not in as unpredictable or off-the-wall a manner as their models. It gets more interesting than the usual brand of this sort of retro-garage-psych when they get into some somewhat more introspective, folk-rock-influenced material, like “Misty Night,” “Flying,” “Sunday Girl,” and “Night Has Come Again.” Here’s an interesting twist on the usual macho garage rock ethos, though, that wouldn’t have flown in the 1960s: a rant against a girl the male singer lusts after who picks “A Girl Instead of Me.” []

Side 1
1 – I’m Crackin’ Up
2 – Don’t Wanna Lose You
3 – Misty Night
4 – Ethanol Rocket II
5 – A Hole In My Head
6 – Flying
7 – Time
Side 2
8 – Since You’ve Been Away
9 – My Other Face
10 – A Girl Instead Of Me
11 – Sunday Girl
12 – Good Life
13 – The Invisible Man
14 – Night Has Come Again