Quality: 3.25 out of 5
Trip-O-Meter: 3 out of 5
Butterfly Lake doesn't bat with the A-listers of the 60's, but for those of us looking for our fix of obscure psych pop, we could do far worse. Goofy lyrics abound flanked by syrupy strings - there isn't really much in the way of edge here. Paul Masse's voice itself isn't really for the ages, but it is pleasant and adds enough dimension to the music to make it interesting. This is music for a breezy, warm Sunday afternoon.
The key track by far is the title track. It becomes more than the sum of its parts as it juxtaposes AM radio ready pop with murder ballad lyrics. Even with a few minor chords thrown in, Mr. Masse doesn't sound too despondent about the drowning incident that he's singing about. The strings with happy pop element doesn't really change much over the course of the album. This is more of comfort food music - especially if you're a lobotomized acid eater (sometimes even I don;t know if I'm complementing or criticizing). As a warning, the cheese factor triples after the fifth track, so you might want to stop this one early if you don't have much tolerance for that. The lyrics of "Dream Along" might actually cause vomiting. This album is pretty rigidly front loaded with the better tracks. Side one probably rates a four or slightly under while side two dares to sing about the magic flea.
Go ahead and strike the cheese alarm on this one. If you have a stomach for some cheese, however, you'll probably find some pleasures on the first half of this one. That's like 15 minutes of solid, but schmaltzy, psych pop if you're in the market for that.