They return armed with a wit like a razorblade disguised as a banana.
Alistair Lawrence 2009-11-19
It’s almost a shame that Electric’s Six video for Gay Bar is one of the funniest – and therefore one of the greatest – promos of all time. It’s a detail, along with an erroneous link to Jack White at the height of The White Stripes’ fame, which eclipsed the fact that their Fire debut was a consistent party album and that they’ve released more than an album a year since, perpetually in search of a good time, armed with a wit like a razorblade disguised as a banana and absolutely no sense of decorum.
Kill’s charm is predictably unpredictable, unapologetically loud in every possible sense at nearly every opportunity and lewd whenever they feel themselves getting bored. Body Shot gets their latest adventure started better without its (mercifully banned) video of pensioners getting naked, but still sounds like a retread of Dance Commander. Much better is the road-trip rock of Escape From Ohio, with its straight up storytelling of “looking for a good time and a radio station we can trust” visceral without resorting to shock tactics. Anyone who’s ever been stuck in a town they can’t stand will find themselves either tapping their foot or punching the air to it, depending how high on life or anything else they’re feeling when they hear it for the first time.
Likewise, Rubbin’ Me the Wrong Way is equally pleasing: a frustrated love song that sounds like it’s tragically tangled in an electric fence, thanks to all the buzzing synths that accompany it. One Sick Puppy alludes to Jesus one verse, rock and roll the next, and generally gives you the feeling that Dick Valentine’s band of musical hedonists aren’t happy unless they’re cooking up a disarming juxtaposition or looking for a sacred cow to barbecue. Steal Your Bones completes Kill’s excellent middle third, a piano-led power ballad that makes apologetically robbing the grave of your friend seem both excusable and understandable.
The rest might slightly tail off in comparison, but sets the record as straight as a band as eccentric and free-spirited as Electric Six will allow it.