Jacob’s Mouse

Jacob’s Mouse was a three-piece alternative rock/punk band from Bury St Edmonds in Suffolk (England), made up of Hugo Boothby (guitar) Jebb Boothby (bass, also Hugo’s twin brother) and Sam Marsh (drums, vocals). Formed during the late 1980s, the trio released The Dot EP in 1990. A vinyl-only release which showcased the group’s interest in alternative rock music, The Dot EP introduced Jebb Boothby’s raw vocal style and the Boothby twins’ driving rhythm passages. The final of the EP’s five tracks, Microflesh, features the strangely satisfying inclusion of a violin backing up the thunderous percussion, pleasantly grating vocals and Hugo’s fluctuation between a psychedelic envelope filter to tremolo-tinged rhythm guitar, reinforcing the experimental vibe which became all the more evident in subsequent releases.

Jacob's Mouse

Jacob’s Mouse

A year later in 1991 the group released their debut album, No Fish Shop Parking, the success of which saw them support bands including Nirvana, Babes in Toyland, Swervedriver, Suede and The Manic Street Preachers. Kurt Cobain once said Jacob’s Mouse was his favourite band at the time, and the late BBC Radio titan John Peel gave the band his support and airtime. It’s safe to say that the band is a little bit special. From album opener Tumbleswan which alternates between indecipherable monologues set above wobbly guitar chords and a jangly punk riff, the psychedelic swagger of A Place to Go and the gloriously filthy The Vase, No Fish Shop Parking is full of little gems waiting to be unearthed.

The Dot EP and No Fish Shop Parking are being re-released in one package as of March 4th on Storm Und Drang Recordings The whole thing reeks of nostalgia for a classic era in confusion-ridden, authentic rock music before the media wrapped up the whole scene in a burrito labelled “grunge” and forced it down our throats until we were sick. But I am pleased to say it has certainly aged well. There’s a lot to enjoy here, and the entire affair is pleasingly down-to-earth. Songs are catchy without being sugar coated and simple without being condescending. I played both releases to my metal-loving friend without telling him anything about the history behind them, and within a few tracks he gave me a serious look and said “who is this – they’re really good!” I felt my job was done…

The 1994 CD on Blithering Idiot –  No Fish Shop Parking is available on Amazon*

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Thanks once again to Robbie for a great review. Find out more about Robbie in 140 characters or less on his twitter account.

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