I’ll be damned if Bryan Scary doesn’t have the stage musical already choreographed for Daffy’s Elixir. It’s a prog-pop concept album with huge scope that drops on April 18, but downloads are available now.
“The Wicked Frontier,” slowly fades into view, a grand introduction with long gorgeous harmonies across it’s Smile-kissed strings and “Happy Trails” rhythm. Then the train pulls into “Ziegfield Station” one of the album highlights, as it zips from player piano to organ to moog and back again. The melody’s hook is repeated with a perfectly chugging outro. Then it kicks in overdrive with “Cable through your Heart” a Scary version of Queen’s “Bohemian Rhapsody” with multiple melody lines and dizzying tone changes. It’s basically the musical version of a tossed salad, and its the exhausting heart of the album.
Wrapped in Floydian Wall of distorted vocal “Silver Lake Mining Company” is a fuzzy musical treat with a dream-like melody at its chewy center. “Diamonds!” is pop in a lush configuration with harp and harpsichord woven together in the chorus. “Ballroom Kid” is another strutting standout that recalls Imperial Drag. But fatigue sets in with “You Might Be Caught In Tarantella,” and even though a few gems are found on the second half of the album (like “The Tale Of Opal Dawn” and “Day-Glo Waterfalls”) it wears out its welcome quickly. Out of the massive 15 tracks here, the mellow “Quicksilver Daisy Day” appears to be the best coda. The mediocre tunes turn a truly great album into merely a very good one. Scary seems to have been caught up in this melodramatic, grandiose mock-opera, making Daffy’s Elixir taste more like strong whisky instead of sweet wine. However after half a bottle, you’ll be pretty dizzy and satisfied.