Shrapnel appears to be a solo/ side project of Day Ravies’ guitar abuser, Sam Wilkinson. That alone would be enough for me to take an interest. Day Ravies’ “Liminal Zones” is still my favourite album of 2015, hands down, no competition, end of story.

But one listen to “Pearl in the Rough” – one of two pre-release songs available to stream on the Strange Pursuits Bandcamp page ahead of the limited edition 30 copy cassette release of  Shrapnel’s “Carpet Tuggers” album – is enough to trigger a Pavlovian buy-now reflex without a second thought.

“Pearl In The Rough” is a big lumbering monster of garagey psychedelic guitar noise. It has some of the combustible spirit of a fiery live performance by The Who circa “Armenia City In The Sky” and the audacious swagger of The Pink Fairies at their wildest best, or even The Scientists, if you prefer a more geographically-appropriate Aussie scuzz-rock reference point.

Two things are obvious from this Shrapnel song: (1) Sam Wilkinson is a hell of a guitarist and (2) he’s writing enough great songs that don’t fit Day Ravies that he can bang out an album of lo-fi DIY guitar-psych mayhem.  I’m going to have to dig out the cassette deck again for this…