Naughty little folk-pop maestro We Show Up On Radar is indeed a person and Zanzibar Whip Coral is indeed his album. A body of songs expelled through his cloud-like body like a turbulent but fruitful gale. This mass of organised air is to be released on Fika Recordings in March 2019.
Nottingham based multi instrumentalist, songwriter and producer Andy Wright - the man inside We Show up On Radar - has conjured up this 9 song popular melodrama using nothing but his own full sized Wurlitzer, complete with rotating platform and wearing his trademark sequinned suit.
Zanzibar Whip Corals is the 4.15 from Waverly Station. The train seats are woven from spun sugar and the train driver is a pelican with secrets in his bill. The gentle breeze spilling through the windows is Andy's voice with a melancholy love story sung for all the weird and wonderful creatures giggling in the distance. His songwriting is tender, almost fragile but his songs are anthemic, bubbling with gentle power. This journey is one of sheer magic and terror, like a lovely nightmare where you wake up smiling.
We Show Up On Radar’s songs are bewitching tales, scattered with references to vegetarian yeti’s, microscopic sea creatures and Greek Gods. It is music that is full of contradictions - childlike and sweet, but a bit wrong; terribly sad, but hopelessly uplifting.
Wright invented libraries and then toured them…. We Show Up On Radar have also recorded on various occasions for the BBC at the legendary Maida Vale studios and Abbey Road. ("surreal, hushed acoustic folk-pop that's both downbeat and delirious" BBC Introducing).
We Show Up On Radar have previously supported The National, Piney Gir, Thomas Truax and Bright Eyes at Nottingham's Rock City and dazzled with a headline show at Club Fandango at the Bull & Gate, London (“an astonishing treat” Artrocker).
Lets all fly away on each other’s smiles.
“This is alt-pop strangeness that would make Wayne Coyne feel like Dido (well, maybe not that strange). We Show Up On Radar is the alias of Andy Wright, a Nottingham-based artist, who is releasing his second album ‘Zanzibar Whip Coral’ through Fika Records. Before doing any research on WSUOR, I had assumed he was some Californian hippie but it turns out he’s from Nottingham which definitely plays into the English sounding melancholy that percolates into the music. There’s a quality to WSUOR’s voice that I really like, it almost reminds me of Gaz Coombs at his most lilting and whimsical.
To put this odd little album in context, artists that it reminds me of are Mort Garson, Flaming Lips, the Beach Boys in some parts (just listen to the harmonies on ‘Willow Tree’), and Daniel Johnston. ‘Heads, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes (Part 2)’ has a tape-recording effect that makes him sound eerily like Johnston in one of his home-recordings, indeed, this is an element that I think WSUOR could make more of in upcoming releases. I prefer the album’s scratchy, lo-fi moments to its glossy, poppy parts.
There are some genuinely heart-felt moments on this album that bely the often quaint music of ‘Zanzibar Whip Coral’, such as the huge, triumphant-yet-sad chord changes on ‘Giant Dinosaur vs Sea Monster’ or the beautiful sample on ‘Crumbs for Erin’. The piano line on ‘A Theogony’ reminds me of a Disney song or an old showtune which is an impressive thing to have achieved.
‘Zanzibar Whip Coral’ is a strange, kaleidoscopic collage of wistful vocals, nursery-rhyme melodies, Beach Boys harmonies, and bizarre imagery (yetis only eating lettuce, anybody?), all gathered up together to make nine songs of pop peculiarity.” Norman Records
“Fragile, sweet and maybe a bit whimsical indiepop songs with a clear uniqueness. The new album is easy to love, like most of his music is. Lovely.” Eardrums