Kosmonaut - Desert Song

matinée 041  /  November 2002
Kosmonaut - Desert Song
7"   $5.00

digital   $2.00

Kosmonaut - Desert Song

matinée 041  /  November 2002

Debut Matinée single from a relatively new English band featuring Stephen Maughan (ex-Bulldozer Crash and creator of the legendary This Almighty Pop! fanzine) and Geoff Suggett (ex-Lavender Faction). Following previous releases on the esteemed Motorway (Japan) and Firestation Tower (Germany) record labels, Kosmonaut mark their debut US release with great new tracks "Desert Song" and "Bee Song" on opposite sides of a beautiful 45 rpm slab of vinyl. With superb melodies, vocals reminiscent of early Creation Records bands, and a harmonious arrangement, these multi-layered guitar pop gems are a soothing tonic. Limited to 1000 copies.

  1. Desert Song
  2. Bee Song


Whoops, Jimmy Tassos did it again--yes, that's right, he released another awesome little slice of POP music. It's nice to actually have a vinyl 7" single in the "single of the week" section! Jimmy is one of the last holdouts of the 7" format, though I've heard he's grown tired of the format--or at least has had a few hassles. Anyway, his labor of love once again reaps a wonderful bounty. Kosmonaut features Stephen Maughan (ex-Bulldozer Crash) and Geoff Suggett (Ex-Lavender Faction), and the results are exactly what you'd expect. Mellow and never dramatic 80s-style pop that reminds me a little bit of Aztec Camera and more than a little bit of those wonderful Just Say Yes samplers. "Bee Song" is my choice for my next new-girl-impression mix-tape sensation. Kudos, now let's get crackin' on that full-length!   --Mundane Sounds (Single of the Week)
The always reliable Matinée label from the USA keeps releasing great pop gems on little black piece of vinyl for us to enjoy. And this release from UK duo Kosmonaut is, of course, no exception. The duo consists of Stephen Maughan, who was once a member of Bulldozer Crash and Denver, and Geoff Suggett, of Lavender Faction fame. Together they have released singles on the Japanese label Motorway and also on the nice German label Firestation Tower. This is their US debut release, and on the A-side we get treated to a song that makes me think of Teenage Fanclub, at the time of their great album 'Songs from Northern Britain', and also a little of the Clientele. Other reviewers before me have also detected a small hint of Aztec Camera, Biff! Bang! Pow! and Sugargliders in here, and I think I will have to agree with them. All in all, it's a great song. On the B-side, 'The Bee Song', the duo have wiped the dust off their old synthesizers, and decided to give them a go. Otherwise, it sounds pretty much like the other side of the vinyl, and that's not a bad thing. This single is perfect for a dark, autumn evening, with the wind howling outside your window. Or maybe just a lazy summer day...   --Pennyblack Magazine
Two more great songs from Stephen Maughan (the man who brought us Bulldozer Crash and Denver) and Geoff Suggett (ex-Lavender Faction!). This brings their total number of released songs to five, including their two-song debut 7" on Firestation Tower and "Was It You?" from a Motorway compilation 7". Both songs have a laidback feel, similar to the Sugargliders or later Biff Bang Pow! Very good stuff, but let's hope their output grows exponentially soon... MTQ=2/2   --IndiePages
Despite the imagery, 'Desert Song' is a sumptuous recording, as delicious as the season's first blueberries. He counts the miles, the steps, walking thru some desert of some life, recalling a time before heartbreak. I imagine anyway. From time to time. Urging 'hold on.' If you remember fondly a group called Butterfly Child then you'll love this. This is better. And on the reverse, 'Bee Song' proves they're no one-trick ponies. It is equally mournful and beautiful. 45rpm. A great soul record.   --Wide Open Road
Kosmonaut kick off their debut US release, a two-song 7", by taking you on a leisurely, relaxed drive out into the desert. The soundtrack to this drive is gently rising waves of synth behind a melodic guitar ballad about holding on to something in life. The B-side (titled "Bee Song," of course) throws some subtle electronic beats and an almost ferocious electric guitar into the mix, while offering an equally calming pop song about regret. Melancholy often goes down best with superbly crafted melodies and harmonies; these two songs are more proof of that.   --Erasing Clouds
the lucksmiths' labelmates kosmonaut are from the north east of england, as under represented in this fanzine as everywhere else, so we can but attempt to redress the balance by observing that following the anthemic firestation tower debut "days of ourlives", the spunky cd-r "in my head" and the welcome resurrection of "was it you ?" on the matinée summer sampler, "desert song" is a serene pop gem which laments how the years flow past with the same inevitability and indecent haste as the sandy landscape flies by the driver's near-side window. subtle and building carefully until the keyboards propel it into a particularly cracking fourth minute, it is probably their strongest outing yet. on the other side "bee song", again careful not to move too fast, sucks the listener in from its opening chords, again with keyboards that seem to slowly emerge, shimmering with longing, and an arrangement which recalls "life goes on"-era bmx bandits (not the first band to do so this month, we know) until it is slightly disfigured by an overbearing guitar line towards the end. like some of that bandits' stuff, the vocals on this two-track 7" occasionally give little hint of being british rather than american, but this is still road music at its finest, and the lingering sentiments of "desert song" in particular hang long in the mind.   --In Love With These Times In Spite Of These Times
More Matinée singles to track down would be the recent releases by Kosmonaut and The Liberty Ship. Kosmonaut offer us the delicious 'Desert Song' and 'Bee Song', both of which glint like silver strings in the Mojave.   --Tangents
What a wistful and poignantly beautiful little record this is. The A side reminds me of a cross between say the musical sense of Fantastic Something and the vibe of Avocadoclub. Sort of groovy but earnest at the same time. And the second side is a bit more ballad like, but equally as emotive and melodic. There isn't much more to say. The record quality is great and so is the packaging and perhaps these two tracks may appear on the album if it happens but then again... If you get records, add this to your list. Another 2 track must have. Wowser. An eye opener for sure.   --Indie Spinzone
Rather lovely guitar pop with a touch of melancholy and a big heart, reminiscent of Aztec Camera.   --Melody Bar
Ik ben ook gewoon een zeikerd. Als ik deze nummers op CD had gehad was het me waarschijnlijk geeneens opgevallen, maar het is een 7" en daarom vraag ik me steeds af of de muziek wel op het juiste toerental staat. Dat is natuurlijk wel het geval, maar het weerhoudt mij ervan echt positief over deze 7" te zijn. Dit ondanks dat ik normaal wel houd van indiepop met een duidelijke knipoog naar Creation-bands uit de jaren '80. Maar omdat ik graag positief ben: de tegelijk aangeschafte, maar twee jaar oudere, Days Of Our Lives-7" van de band is wél heel leuk.   --Think Small