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Beans On Toast – Writing On The Wall

Nichola Eastwood


Beans On Toast, a one man band otherwise known as Jay, produces folk tunes as bizarre and random as the bands name.  This ten song offering has a distinctive, raw, warts and all quality.  Scruffy and rugged, much like Jay’s vocals, Writing On The Wall is a satirical diamond in the rough. This is not an album for the easily offended.  Tracks like artmoneyart, Oil and Methadrone are destined to insult the politically correct.  Oil is an open criticism of human greed.  Jay happily informs us of an imminent apocalypse, as the aforementioned fuel runs out.

‘Well this is a song about glamorising drugs’ is the opening message of Methadrone and that’s a pretty accurate description.  An incessantly upbeat track, violins accompany Beans On Toast’s humorous take on the subject.  It’s a track you’ll either love or hate, personally I find myself smiling from ear to ear. Old Grunge finds Beans On Toast directing his satirical talents towards every genre of music available, a tune poking fun at any genre that takes itself too seriously.  Old Grunge is a happy, throwaway track with more spring in its step than a bouncy castle.

New Can Of Tuna is a violin led track about taking life as it comes.  A tune as laid back as the message it delivers, this is the first occasion on the album where we hear vocals other than Jay’s.  This makes for a pleasant change as the harmony serves only to enhance the guttural charm of Jay’s vocals and the overall sound of his cheery, distinctive folk. The closest Writing On The Wall gets to a love song comes in the form of the awkwardly titled Travel Back In Time Dance.  Jay’s mellow attitude doesn’t falter, we steer clear of any mushy pitfalls, as Beans On Toast guides us through a disposable holiday romance.  Even romance is a topic not to be taken seriously on this album.

Closing track A Real Life Country Song does exactly what it says on the tin.  It’s Beans On Toast’s attempt at country and it makes for a pretty much perfect end to this chilled out haze of an album. Writing On The Wall is a gutsy performance from Beans On Toast, it’s an opinionated and devil may care infused record.  Unfortunately this could also be the album’s downfall, a bit like Marmite, you’ll either love it or hate it.  If you like your folk chilled out and seasoned with humorous satire then this is the record for you, if not then steer clear.