The Green Question Mark is a unique collaboration between four remarkable talents. Marrs Bonfire has been presenting the Smart Set radio show on BayFM since 2010. Besides being an ace presenter he's also a mean tub thumper and vocalist and has played with The Land Registry Office and The Inept. He's ably supported on his debut Extended Play release by the legendary Icarus Peel, who produced the record , the critically acclaimed Mordecai Smyth and the talented Crystal Jacqueline. Together they are The Green Question Mark.
We at Mega Dodo HQ like to give value for money and managed to squeeze 15 minutes playing time onto this Extended Player. Not only does the EP come in a specially commissioned psychedelic sleeve, it's pressed on unique green vinyl and is limited to only 250 numbered copies. As an extra bonus you also get a free download of all four classic psyche tracks in either hi-resolution FLAC format or MP3.
The EP opens with a majestic reading of the Rolling Stones classic 'She's A Rainbow' and is followed by a psyched up version of the rare Syd Barrett song 'Lucy Leave'. Side two opens with a galloping version of the Hollies psychedelic classic 'Pegasus'. We close the EP with a rocking take on Grapefruit's wonderful 'Elevator'. if you're not too psyched out by the end why not flip the disc over for a repeat dose of definite satori full on psychic clairvoyance. Yeah, baby!
Broken Hearted Toy
I’m not clear on whether Pegasus by The Green ?uestion Mark is a one-shot collaboration on some vintage psychedelic tunes, or the debut from a new British band. The members consist of radio personality/vocalist Marrs Bonfire; producer Icarus Peel; eccentric musician Mordecai Smyth (whose Sticky Tape And Rust album was favorably reviewed here on Broken Hearted Toy); and the mysterious Chrystal Jacqueline, who’s simply described as ‘talented.’ One thing is for sure: None of these people are using their real names.
That said, The Green ?uestion Mark’s Pegasus EP, which is available as a limited edition green vinyl record as well as in digital form, is a lot of fun. Of course, any band that features an obscure Hollies tune as its title track is likely to snag a favorable write-up on BHT. Bonfire and his mates give “Pegasus,” (which was originally a rare opportunity for guitarist/harmony vocalist Tony Hicks to sing lead) an arrangement reminiscent of The Hollies mid-1960s classic LPs, Evolution and Butterfly.
The Green ?uestion Mark’s take on “She’s A Rainbow” is more ornate than the Rolling Stones version but still rousing, while their cover of Syd Barrett’s “Lucy Leave” comes across as energetic garage rock. The EP closes with a cover of Grapefruit’s “Elevator” that switches to an instrumental at the minute and a half mark. It should be interesting to see what The Green ?uestion Mark does next. In the meantime, Mordecai Smyth has a new release due out in the coming months.
Mainly the work of Marrs Bonfire, a DJ on Bay FM radio (106.40), whose show covers psych, freakbeat, mod etc, the “Pegasus” EP collects together four covers of sixties psych-pop tunes. Once you have placed the needle on the lovely green vinyl (grin), a rather splendid version of “She's a Rainbow” greets your ears, complete with all manner of effects and slightly faster than the original the track includes mellotron from Mordecai Smyth an is just excellent. Next up, the reasonably obscure “Lucy Leave” (Pink Floyd) is given the once over, the tune full of energy and some fine guitar courtesy of Mr Smyth, again. On side 2, some chiming bells usher in “Pegasus” (The Hollies), the song given a haunting psych sheen, the arrangement lifting the song making my favourite on the collection, but then I love sixties psych-pop and this is a perfect example. Finally, a rip-roaring cover of “Elevator” (Grapefruit), the band going for the psychedelic jugular with effects and instrument writhing together in an arrangement designed to blow your mind. Not having heard the original (something I plan to rectify soon), I can make no comparison, but if it is a good as this version then I will be a very happy man. If this collection was released on Fruit De Mer Records, it would sell out instantly, I see no reason why Mega Dodo should fare any worse, a minor classic and worth your money.
God Is In The TV
Just 250 of these babies all coming housed in a rather dandy specially commissioned super psyched sleeve inside of which an extended play set is pressed upon 7 inches of splatter coloured vinyl. The green question mark are a 4 piece headed up by who in his spare time hosts the Smart Set radio extravaganza for BayFM – other members incidentally go by such names as and – indeed. The actual platter comes via the mega dodo imprint run by some dude called Mike who incidentally messaged us about the labels wares which also include a full length by the honey pot and a highly tipped outing (at least by the broken hearted toy guys at brokenheartedtoy.blogspot.co.uk) by the aforementioned Mordecai Smyth all of which we’ll do our level best to include in this particular missive though failing that certainly in the next. Anyhow four suitably hot washed kaleidoscopic covers feature on this quite frankly superb seven opening with a rather faithfully woozy (and by that I mean it even comes replete with the childlike la la’s and the bizarrely deflating outro) take on the Stones ’she’s a rainbow’ here caressed in all manner of string and pirouetting key garlands and kissed with a more than uplifting effervescence. Next up ’lucie leave’ – originally committed to tape by a very youthful Floyd and written by and here re-visioned with nods to the Soft Boys as a killer slab of corkscrewing lysergic garage grooved beat pop with added fringe floppy freak beat forays. Elsewhere grapefruit’s lost gem ‘elevator’ is dutifully decoded with a bracing and busily shimmer toned bubble grooved quotient of stirring sun shiny pop but it’s the bands re-appraisal of ’Pegasus’ that seals the set and provides the EP with its centrepiece. Gorgeously arrested in a willowy folk enchantment and murmuring to a hallucinogenic mindset that utters promises of magic and wonderment, this slice of spectral loveliness tingles and trips with a dream weaved fairy like nothingness to all at once spell craft and seduce. Essential in short.