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Friday, 11 May 2012

The Futureheads – Rant

I'll make no bones about it.
I used to love the Futureheads.
The first couple of albums were a post punk breath of fresh air.
Then everything seemed to go tits up rather rapidly.
My love affair with the band was seriously derailed when along with my son we went to see them play a gig in Glasgow.
That show is one of only two that I have ever walked out on.
(Whisper it, The other was Killing Joke in Edinburgh)
The sound on the night was a deafening mess and all the harmonies that I was particularly impressed with were lost within the roar, while the backdrop was a wall of seizure inducing lighting that strobed intensely and viciously at the crowd.
If we had stayed until the end I suspect my son would have morphed into Tommy. That deaf dumb and blind kid with the pinball machine.
When people ask me what the worst gig I have ever attended is I usually say that it was this one.
From that night The Futureheads and myself exited through different doors and until now our paths have never crossed.
With their latest release it sounds like a belated apology from an old flame though.
With the harmonies firmly in place their collection of self penned and covers done in a a cappella style has provided me with a welcome reintroduction to the band.
I can feel the stirring of attraction building up.
Apart from their original songs there's an impressive take on a round in their cover of 'Sumer is Icumen in', a medieval song that was apparently written around 1260.
While their reinterpretations of songs by both the Black Eyed Peas and Kelis sound better to my ears than the original, while their rendition of the Sparks classic 'The No 1 song in Heaven' is pretty sharp to.
The covers themselves nestle very comfortably in among the bands own material.
They don't jump out and give the impression of being dislocated from the whole and instead the a cappella angle gives the whole album a great deal of comfortable cohesiveness.
I'm very impressed to be honest.
If they continue to release albums of this quality then I may forgive them for scuppering our burgeoning relationship years ago and give them another chance.

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