The folly of judging a book by its cover, or in this case, the band by its name… Pizza Crunch I confess and I’m sorry.
Upon reading the name I flashed back, to a particularly ramshackle gig where the Home Alone star’s Pizza Underground flailed, back to 80’s and 90’s TMNT cartoons, back to pizza for breakfast and a uni-room wallpapered in unwashed pizza boxes. Again, it’s on me and I’m sorry.
I’m sorry because ‘Coma-Inducing Gibberish’ is so, so far from both the imagined band-name connotations, and any forbearing fears from the song title. This single is a dryly writ late-noughties hit of indie guitar and hot agro pop. Neat crafted licks flicker by wrought and tight with the clean frantic feel of Julian Casablancas solo work, and there’s a tongue in cheek depth that I should have seen coming.
Between those new-retro throwbacks to Hot Hot Heat’s ‘Bandages’ and late career Strokes, there’s a newness, a carelessness, a free-wheeling nonchalance, there’s a touch of a proto-punk attitude. It’s lightweight on surface but tough at the centre, grounded in cute observations. If there’s a game in not sounding too clever, with extra points for using the word ‘naff’ in a pop song, this single might just scrape top marks.
Flickering along forming hurdles / to distract you from what’s done
/ what a faff.
Dying to work, working ‘til you die / what a life
/… It’s naff
And so wraps up the review of this single, not wanting to sound any cleverer. Arrestingly catchy with hard smarts and hooks, a pleasure to play on repeat as I write, a gleefully understated surprise. While I slap myself hard on the wrist for the intro, the music makes up for the bruises.