Single review – Teen Sorcerer by Doleful Lions (2020) (Crowned and Conquering Child)
The coolest accolade that can ever be afforded to any genuinely indie act (think the likes of The Slient Boys or The Black Watch) is that they are a ‘lost act’.
This generally tends to imply to acts that have been around for eons, have a small, but frenzied / loyal fanbase who keep the act pertinent despite (or maybe because of) the general sense of left field, but never really receive the critical/commercial acclaim they really deserve.
I have been part of the ‘loyal frenzy’ for Chicago’s The Doleful Lions for many years now and although each album sees them get more and more critical acclaim, it is somehow strange that this never really drags them out of the ‘lost act’ category.
This two track digital single is a typical example of why they will always take their place at the top table of any musical feast proffered by the erstwhile leaders of the kingdom of indie cool. They are the sort of sounds that tend to get used as title tracks for those cult ‘lost TV Shows’ that no one ever really talks about, until a Facebook fan page springs up 20 years later, uniting a legion of fans who once thought they were alone.
Both tracks have the slight monasterial production of 3. A.M. Again (previously Night Heron) juxtaposed against the enigmatic sense of slight twee / indie-pop weirdness of the Watoo Watoo type aesthetic, or the more sane moments of the Rocketship catalogue, as increasingly subtle layers of sound keep being added to a general foundation, that in itself is almost impossible to define.
Perhaps it is this genuine sense of unique that has kept them (or ‘him’, considering Jonathan Scott (pictured) has been the only real constant of the various line ups over the past two decades) around for so long and made them one of the best ‘lost acts’ ever.
Certainly the left field avarice in this single will do nothing to detract from that glorious essence.