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Libertines

The Libertines – “Up The Bracket” – Rough Trade

The Libertines up the ante in the best new British band of 2002 competition with their second 45 on Rough Trade. Produced by Mick Jones (The Clash), “Up The Bracket” picks up the gauntlet where “What A Waster” left it & drags it kicking & screaming all the way to the bank. Opening with a cry of “gerrroutofitttt”, “Up The Bracket” is another frenetic slice of amphetamine laced tunesmithery that will do absolutely nothing to halt the procession of rabid plaudits currently being left outside The Libertines squat door on an almost daily basis. “Up The Bracket” comes in 3 different flavas: 7” & 2 x CDs. Mick Jones influence is all over “The Delany” (track 2 on CD 1), which comes on like an outtake from a lost Clash session from 1978. “Plan A” is a far more sedate affair that, by The Libertines standards, could very possibly be described as a ballad!! CD 2 features 2 further tracks, “Boys In The Band” (The 7” b-side) & the excellently titled “Skag & Bone Man” (which falls apart gloriously mid-song when the boys declare, “We fucked it up”).

The Libertines are stacking up nicely to deliver a debut LP to set the capital on fire, & as we know full well, garageland London hasn’t burnt properly since the heady days of Mick Jones & The Clash. Moods for modernists.

Evan Halshaw – trakMARX – Sept 2002-10-03


white stripes
The White Stripes – “Dead Leaves & The Dirty Ground” – XL Recordings

The 34th single to be released from the “White Blood Cells” LP in the continued crusade to recoup XL’s million buck advance (the fact that they’ve just knocked out the next LP @ Toerag for a fraction of the cost it takes Primal Scream to rehearse for a week is neither here nor there). “Dead Leaves” is as good as it was 12 months or so ago when it kicked off the LP & heralded The Stripes move into a far dirtier, gritty sound. The review copy resolutely refused to function properly in the office CD player so I have no idea what b-side, “Arthur P. Dottweiler”, sounds like (I think we can hazard a guess by now – Ed.). Rumoured to be expanding to a 3-piece shortly with the addition of Steve White on bass, The White Stripes are destined to be giving us all the blues for some considerable time to come. Let’s hope they loose the Macca karaoke tunes next time out.


moco
Moco – “Where She Goes” – Poolside

Moco hail from Manchester where they have been thrilling the Manchester Evening News in particular with their strident brand of guitar toting “trash-rock” (press release term). Using the under carriage of an early Ash riff, Moco state their claim to access the current NYC vibe by default but come on more like that bloke out of Divine Comedy fronting The Dandy Warhols. Singer Steve Jones sports gargantuan sideburns possibly stolen from that dick from Supergrass but sadly fails to dye them the same deep purple as his hair. “Dirty Love” sees the confusion grow as Moco struggle to decide whether to be Amen or The Dandy Warhols. By the time we make it to “The New Official Truth” the jury has all but packed up & fucked off. File under: desperate, Dandy.

Marquee Smith – trakMARX.com – Sept 2002

the datsuns
The Datsuns – “In Love” – V2

Fuck me – it’s Deep Purple - & we’re not talking about Prince being drowned at a party round at Barrymore’s, either. Seriously, we haven’t heard this kind of organ drenched, monitor straddled, riff mongery since we all got back from Montreaux in 74, maaaaan. Frank Zappa & The Mothers were at the best place in town, The Datsuns parents must have been taking notes because they’ve got it all down on tape here. To be honest, when Dave Grohl starts recommending shit, it’s time for this soldier to head for the hills. Some shady types around the tM office have been bigging these Kiwi long hairs up to the roof for a while now. Personally, I’d rather have my intestines ripped out by a hungry psychotic pit-bull then ever have to listen to this shite again.

Wayne Cocaine – trakMARX.com – Sept 2002


mclusky
mclusky – “alan is a cowboy killer” – Too Pure

The capital letter allergic pride of Wales return with the latest 45 to be taken from their excellent Albini produced 2nd LP, “mclusky do dallas”. “allan is a cowboy killer” casually drawls, “pull my up pants/now the camera crew has gone/in your statement to the police/tell them how you turned me on”. The CD also features the unreleased “exciting whistle-ah”, a live vershun of 1st LP stomper “friends stoning friends” & the fabulous “random celebrity insult generator” (featuring the immortal line: “nick berry had talent in a previous life”). mclusky are currently one of the most feisty combos this piss poor isle has to offer - they deserve your time, attention & patronage in equal measure. Don’t let another promising young band with absolutely no pretensions whatsoever slip by without giving them your wholehearted support. A world without the likes of mclusky is a world of shite.

Guy Debored – trakMARX – Sept 2002


parva
Parva – “Hessles” – Mantra

Leeds upstarts Parva follow trendy support slots with the likes of The Datsuns, The Catheters & The Rapture with new 45, “Hessles” (named after the area of Leeds where lead singer Ricky lays his weary head at the end of another busy Parva day). The press release talks of genre straddling & total ease – the 3 cuts on offer here provide scant evidence of this. “Hessles” desperately wants to come over all moody: sub-Joy Division bass intro, Kirk Brandon vocal inflections, incendiary guitars – but ends up not a million miles away from a young Mansun. “Put Me On The Cover Of Your Magazine” is a fine insight into Parva’s long term game-plan whilst “1 A.H.A.” is just bizarre – imagine Bad Manners trying to re-write “Ghost Town” without bothering with lyrics. File alongside Hoggboy & move along quietly, please.

Wayne Cocaine – trakMARX – Sept 2002


radio 4
Radio 4 – “Gotham” – City Slang

Radio 4 are the latest inhabitants of NYC who’ve obviously spent the last few years with only The Gang Of Four’s “Entertainment” for company. Produced by the very fucking trendy indeed, DFA (The Rapture, LCD Soundsystem, The Juan Maclean), “Gotham” drags the production values & guitar sounds of post-punk Britain resolutely into the new millennium. Sounding not unlike a fight between Talking Heads & an A&R guy from Postcard Records in a Leeds pub in 1982, “Gotham” brings back memories we hoped we’d lost forever like bad acid flashbacks. Recent 45, “Eyes Wide Open”, is a fine example of the kind of currency being thrown around by Radio 4: hi-hat frenzies, choppy clean-ish guitars, niggling pseudo-funk arpeggios & (ooh my Gawd) rack-tom fills!!! Elsewhere Radio 4 “dabble” in dub technique application realisation, wishy-washy “breakdowns” & suspect tales of the underground (NB - the only people ever allowed to boast about working underground are Tube train drivers). By the time we reach “Calling All Enthusiasts” Radio 4 have turned into a poor man’s Clash circa “Combat Rock” & the CD has been violently removed from the CD player & ritually destroyed. Damaged Goods.

Guy Debored – trakMARX – Sept 2002


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