They live in a haze of accidentally anthemic self-made and self-assured angst, where webs and threads of Bona Drag and Juju clean-jangled guitars (from Morrissey and Banshees respectively) weave like a network of nerves up and through.
“Each song sounds like a deep fear of drowning …and Every now and then, and just for a second, some sugar-dirt glimmer of sound slices through but we’re swimming in loneliness still.”
“Through mutations and lineups and 40+ years, The Stranglers are always The Stranglers; Always present, still moving, for better …Or worse.”
“40 years worth of love and half blind adoration has gathered us here to sing to hymns from ‘The Crack’; The Ruts ’79 debut album. Thick with punk’s grit and gristle and dub-reggae tricks it’s a head above pure protest thrash.”
Slung back and forth through an excess-free set… Everything’s played like it’s fresh out the meat locker, everything’s keen and still glowing.
Harsh isolation, dystopian dreamscapes, semi-connected catharsis caught up in electronic precision.
That’s the evolving sound of Blancmange 2.0; collections of stripped down half hooks, building in escalating elaborations, repeated in sheets of thin ice and cool water. This is Neil Arthur from 2016’s Unfurnished Rooms, through to 2017’s Fader and Near Future, through this year’s Blancmange album Wonderlust.
Riot tinged pop and protest promotion… But I feel safer than I should be feeling.
Austin. Achingly hip and alarmingly cool. Coffee bean fetishists, thrift store hi-glam, nu-age craft ales in gleaming clean structures and retro set wide-eyed fresh faces.
Hot dog and burger bars tower their meats with all kinds of sides, only skyscrapers outside match their stature. Weed’s offered out by bar maids and waiters and I don’t feel young, pretty or thin.
We’re still star-fishing our way in and out, back and forth spikes out of Panama City Beach, moving on interstate spines. This is last trip where we go out and back before leaving our friend’s nest for good. Three New Orleans nights and return then it’s not so straight lines to nowhere.
New Orleans is glistening voodoo jewel jubilation with rhythm and heat in the pit of its soul. New Orleans sleeps rough in the dirt of it’s past, it’s disasters and racial divides. It’s truth is a sweet spot between.
Nashville has an ego. Lights, signs and neons all big as that ego with history gone to it’s head. It’s been ‘Music City – USA’ since WSM AM radio cast out it’s shout over 38 states with weekly live shows and recordings. Broadcasts began in 1925, name was claimed 1950 set against rock and roll. ‘Birthplace of bluegrass’, ‘home of country music’, ‘songwriting capital of the world’; There’s plenty of others to pick from.