Dollar Lizard Money Zombie is the third studio album from HMS Morris a band who have always pushed the boundaries of creativity within pop music. Yet, what they have done with Dollar Lizard Money Zombie is push the boundaries as far as you could possibly imagine anyone going. There is an unbelievable amount of genre breaking pop music within the sounds of this album. Every time I listen to the album, I hear something new. I find myself in complete awe at the sheer talent and imagination of the musicians that come together to form HMS Morris and to treat us to music that will inspire, inform, make us question the wrongs in the world, lift our mood and make us believe that anything is possible.
House opens the album with so much drama and sarcasm that means I am more than justified in using the word genius to describe HMS Morris. The song deals with the subject of people who are bored with too much money buying up second homes in Wales “You don’t even rent it out / You don’t know what’s life about”, and preventing people in the local area from being able to buy a home where they live and not get on the housing market “My friend Mari wants to buy a house / She works really hard”.
Balls is next reminding you of the importance of believing in yourself, you can set yourself goals in life, grab life by the scruff of the neck and take on whatever is thrown at you. Balls is a great example of the power of music, how melodies and lyrics can inspire you even if you don’t speak the language the song is sung in. Balls is sung in the beautiful language of Welsh and you honestly don’t have to be able to understand Welsh to feel inspired by this song.
How many times is it acceptable to use the word genius in one review? When it comes to a band like HMS Morris and an album like Dollar Lizard Money Zombie I think it is more than ok to use the word genius several times. Guess what, the next song Ceredigion is another example of the genius of this band. Ceredigion is such an enthralling song with mesmerizing melodies that take you on a journey from which you will never want to return. The lyrics perfectly capture life in a small town, where everyone knows each other and the tales are passed on through generations of families “”They know your Gran, they know your dad, they know how many lives you’ve had”. We all know places like this, many of us live in these towns, and there is something quite comforting about the familiarity of communities like this “The Ceredigion gossip highway its secret but its profound / a mycelium that’s all knowing / running underground”.
Family Souls is a big slice of funk and soul that gets deep inside your soul. Its another seamless pop song that needs to be heard by the masses.
Cockapoo is a sweet, melodic and sarcastic song about middle class life and how this is not achievable for so many. How the Cockapoo has become the symbol of middle class family life “I could have had a swimming pool a cockapoo”. Bach+Dwl appears to be full of darkness and rage with every sound you hear and every lyric that is sung coming straight from the heart. The collision of the sounds within this song is another wonderful listening experience. Success appears to be full of reflection of what success looks like. The emphasis we put on success and pressure being put on people to achieve what society determines to be successful, how comparing ourselves to others makes us question paths we took in life; “Now back to me / when I see you on my screen / You make me doubt every decision I made before 30”.
110 swaps from drama and passion within the musical sounds to the sweet vocals and in so doing ensures that the listener is fully captivated and can’t wait to hear what comes next. Bingo is full of emotion, wit, and lyrics that allows us to join the songwriters on a journey back to our past. Reflecting to those days of being a young adult, the decisions that were made and how it is those past experiences, those formative years that may be embarrassing at times to look back on, but it is those times that helped to shape and make us who we are today. “I’ve been sitting on a pack of lies / sealed them up with cable ties / lets get the snips out and lets get pissed / airing out the bits we missed”.
As we are now approaching the end of the album, I am going to use the word genius again to describe Books as once again HMS Morris have recorded a song that is full to the brim of the qualities of a genius. The theme of Dollar Lizard Money Zombie is how capitalism has in many ways destroyed the world, destroyed societies, make us think we need things we don’t. How the power is with the rich. Books sums all this up in such a beautiful and elegant way. How being rich does not guarantee you a place in heaven and the poor don’t go to hell. This song needs to be played everywhere with the aim of inspiring people to come together, to say enough is enough, humans are all different and we need to respect that, we need to make the world more equal and how the world would be a better place if the rich were not in charge. The album closes with Datganiadu with twinkling melodies and vocals that will leave you feeling warm, happy and hopeful for better days to come.
Even after writing these words, listening to Dollar Lizard Money Zombie several times I still feel I have not done the album justice. I have only scratched the surface of the depth, quality, and brilliance that you can find within this album. I urge you to please don’t waste another minute get yourself a copy of Dollar Lizard Money Zombie, form your own opinion, which I am pretty sure will be one of love and respect for the album and HMS Morris.