Wild Beasts – new album review and interview

May 11, 2011

Wild Beasts

I am a lucky, lucky man to be doing the job I do. Getting paid to write about an amazing record, and talk to one of its makers. Lucky, lucky, lucky.

Read my review of Wild Beasts‘ new album, Smother, on the BBC.

Read my interview with frontman Hayden Thorpe on the BBC Music Blog.

So good. Probably my favourite album of the year so far. If it’s not in the Mercury shortlist when it’s announced in July, somebody’s made a mistake.

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Loving This Right Now.

April 12, 2011

thumbs up

What’s dominating the 160GB slab that rocks about in my pocket, right now…

Wild Beasts, Smother (Domino, released 9 May)
I’m not sure I’ve loved an album more than this in 2011 so far. It’s a special record, Smother; one that gets into the blood so instantly one wonders if its effects will be only short-lived. Not so. I’m not much of a betting man, but if I was I’d have a tenner on this for the Mercury. And how beautiful is the video to Albatross? Very.

Wild Beasts – Albatross

Gang Gang Dance, Eye Contact (4AD, released 9 May)
I’m still getting to grips with this new LP from NYC’s best whatever-they-want-to-be ‘indie-dance’ (loosest-possible-sense application) combo. Beats that spark fire from sticks on skins; synths that shimmer like a desert mirage; vocals like Kate Bush wired to the International Space Station. Incredible fare – and the rush doesn’t seem to be subsiding anytime soon.

Gang Gang Dance – MindKilla

Beastie Boys, Hot Sauce Committee Part Two (EMI, released 2 May)
There’s no way this should be as good as it is. Three 40-something dudes essentially doing what they did back in the mid-80s. But with superlative production and a real sense in the vocals that the Beasties are hungrier than ever to be heard – especially after MCA’s health problems – Hot Sauce Committee Part Two is a scintillating listen. Every bone in my body is shaking with gratitude that it’s turned out as well as it has.

Beastie Boys feat. NaS – Too Many Rappers

Three Trapped Tigers – Route One or Die (Blood and Biscuits, released 30 May)
I’ve already said plenty on this particular slice of sonic brilliance – click here to read as much.

Three Trapped Tigers – Cramm

True Widow – As High As the Highest Heavens… (Kemado, released 2 May)
This second album from the Texan post-metallers (?) has a ridiculously long title. But it’s the music on it that’s leaving me breathless at the moment. Like Autolux meeting Queens of the Stone Age for a secret liaison in some underground club that only those with the right tattoos gain entry to. Not me, then. Check out Skull Eyes below.

True Widow – Skull Eyes


This is not a review of the new Wild Beasts album, Smother.

March 18, 2011

Wild beasts

But I can’t wait to write one. Saying nothing more, now, beyond “it’s very good”.

Smother, the foursome’s follow-up to their Mercury-nominated album Two Dancers, comes out via Domino on 9 May. MySpace.

Wild Beasts – Albatross, from Smother