reviews april 2004

Hearts of Darknesses, Music For Drunk Driving (Asphodel/Schematic Waste Management) CD
In the dream, the gaffa tape is cutting into your wrists and ankles as you struggle. In the dream, a right fucking freak is making a right fucking racket beating everything on everything while he stomps around you, yelping and scrrrrreeching and running fragments of rhymes all ways out. In the dream, you begin to appreciate the beat syncopation, the tense abbreviated hip hop, the FFWD>> rock of the manic mouth man. Then you wake up. And Hearts of Darknesses are on. And the gaffa tape is cutting into your wrists and ankles..

Ascoltare, vs Keith (Dubbel) CDR
Kool Keith on drugs (read that how you like) backed by the ghost of a glitch with a pulse so slow it should be read the last rites. A second version adds scuttling and echo and criminally underused melancholy keys. The 3" CD comes with a sample bag of white powder (and not just for the journalists, on this occasion.)

Scatter, Surprising Sing Stupendous Love (Pickled Egg) CD
If rain was musical (bear with me on this one) and it rained and the rain was hitting your window (hang on in there) and you were watching and listening to the rain hit the pane and drain in irregular runs down to the sill (still here?) then you'd be where Scatter are. Surging, gusting, relenting, pattering, trickling, refreshing and cleansing, Scatter's folk/jazz beauty is as natural and organic as the weather. And if that's too airy fairy for you, one of them in also in Franz Ferdinand.

Evader, Acorns and Leaves (Happy Capitalist) CDS
All the very greatest songs share one feature. It's not tunes. It's not lyrics. It's not fashion. It's not attitude. None of these. No, it's stopping. The bad songs last forever. The great ones last exactly as long as they need to. Evader aren't great yet, but they certainly know where the end of their songs should be. There's nothing complicated about these three songs - cheerful noise pop like, I don't know, Spraydog used to make - but crucially they're not made complicated by precious overworking. The tune, the fuzz, the chorus, the optional gag, the end.

Viva Stereo, The Surface Has Been Scratched EP CDS
Jesus Son kicks off like it's going to be techno, a cascade of chirruping electro burbles and a 4-4. Then the guitars drop in and it's going to be Spaceman 3 doing their 13th Floor Elevators psyche thing. And then the bleeps come back. And the whole thing just builds and builds and I never quite get to the end of the review before I realise I've stopped typing to listen again.

Kentucky AFC, Outlaw (Remote Control) CDS
Cymru and Western, anyone? Imagine the Super Furries romping through some old Country number (and, just for fun, saying "ass" a lot) with rather more eccentricity and electricity than the rednecks of Texas would've had to hand and you're pretty much there.


: reviews : interviews : live : features : shop : search: contact