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kaptain black - in fertility
by: mark e 18 april 05
having released 3 superb singles as the foofs (and variations thereof), we at last get to hear the bands full lengther, only this time with a new band name. so now we have the album title and the bands name giving us clues as to the sound contained within ie nirvana (in utero) and the pixies (frank black). even so, the cardiff trio have continued with their passion for grotty guitar noise and pop song structures, as the album consists of shouty scream-a-long classics such as the one survivor from their previous incarnation 'timmy zuckermann', sitting alongside noisy loud-quiet-really-f*cking-loud counterparts to wonderful effect. the lead singer kris, approaches the lyrics with a style that is both exhausting and concerning, doesn't the man care for his vocal chords? he literally sounds to be shredding all ounces of his talent, but somehow, his combination of calm beautifully sung melodies, cosy up next to the full on onslaught of rage and passion in a manner which suit the messy punk surroundings brilliantly.
as before with the foofs, the songs take a few listens to reveal themselves fully. the listener has to be prepared for throbbing ears and have the aspirin to hand. but, when the song structures hit .. damn do they hit hard and fast. classic after classic begin to come out of the murky noise making each listen more enjoyable than the last - firstly there is the riffed up lemonheads styled classic 'eso's revenge' with its school anthem like lyrics (could the band become the new busted perhaps !) , the surreal 'drone of the queen bee' and the young lust of 'seeing the girl'. 3 tracks all of which kinda sum up all the various aspects to the band : innocent school days, freaky off the wall weirdness and simple lust - after all what more is there in life! throughout the album the songs are wrapped up by the three piece going for it with their instruments, throwing grunge, noise, punk-pop, into the blender and letting the results fall out naturally, with little in the way of studio polish as not an ounce of flab has been allowed during the tight 45 minutes. songs are direct, to the point and chorus ridden ('sharpen pens with me' will embed itself and make you hit the repeat button with joyful glee). admittedly, the band are recalling past glories by the bands reference points, but they're always forging new ways forward with their dynamic guitar/bass/drums interplay.
so yes, for this listener the wait has been worth it (the album was shelved for quite a while - waiting for the right time to be revealed to the world at large), as i reckon this is a great noisy rock album which dips its toes into the underground while keeping its eyes and ears on the pop world.
my love affair with this band continues ..
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