For the uninitiated ‘Into The Moss’ is a weekly radio show airing every Thursday at 6:15pm on Resonance FM. It mixes spoken word oddities, noise, free jazz and lo-fi pop songs. Featuring Churchill-esque voices, absurd humour and poetry, each show is an intoxicating 15 minutes with sections segueing into one another. Already 27 episodes deep, having started last summer, there’s a lot to catch up on if you’ve just started. However, each show stands up well on its own. Often subtly hilarious, always surreal, creators James Baxter, James Ferris and Ben Polhill have also put together a compilation of songs from the first 22 shows. It’s titled “Into the Moss: Songs vol.1”.
For the most part the album is very much a psychedelic record. Tracks like “Moby Man Alive”, “Scattering Meals”, “Naughtying Around”, “Holy Moly” and ”Rat At Tat Tut” all have an Animal Collective-like quality.
“Do Not Stack”, following it’s piano intro, reveals itself to be a rather brilliant piece of spoken word Cosmiche.
The group have a wonderfully silly sense of humour. This is evidenced by the delightful harmony driven odd pop of “Well Toned At The End”.
Elsewhere the album takes in washed out bluesy chants (Newts), regal Beach Boys pop (Tree Care Range, Seagull Stitch) and creepy folk with affected West Country accents (Fox Chant)!
The affected voices don’t end there. There’s the weary Tom Waits-esque “Hell Hound” and ghostly pensioners on “Our Small Folded Corner” and “That Could Be Good”. We reach peak pensioner on the strange, Velvet Underground strut of “Thought I Would’ve”.
Packing in 22 tracks, yet remaining entertaining throughout, ‘Songs vol.1’ serves as a neat introduction to the bizarre world the trio have been absorbed into during the seemingly endless coronavirus lockdowns. Despite the songs coming from different episodes, it all sits together very well. It’s an exercise in pure escapism with what many would no doubt call a “very British” eccentricity.
You can catch up with the show in its entirety on their Bandcamp page.
Into the Moss is broadcast Thursdays at 18:15 (repeated Saturdays at 11:45) on Resonance FM.
You may enjoy this if you like: Animal Collective, The Mighty Boosh