It Hugs Back - Recommended Record

The title says it all

Recommended Record

Get ye to the beach and jump
around with some friends: you
know, the way hip clothing
adverts make you think your
life could be, but actually
never will be… until you give
yourself over to an album like
Recommended Record. If the
world were a fair place, this
would be pumping out of car
stereos from New Cross to
Newquay until the clocks go
back again.

With their third album,
Wire guitarist Matthew Simms
and cohorts (including
drummer Will Blackaby,
whose own Shy Nature project
has just come out of hiding –
check Deadly Sin on YouTube)
create infectious, wonky
guitar-pop the likes of which
we’ve not heard enough of
recently. The opening one-two
punch of Sa Sa Sa Sails and
Go Magic! comes on like
a shoegazy Super Furry
Animals: a shot of euphoria in
the faces of 80s revivalists
lost in their affected ennui.

Recommended Record is
a dizzying listen at times, with
Simms’ Wire credentials
ensuring that song structures
come perilously close to flying
off their axes. Even an
instrumental named Piano
Drone is far more kinetic and
magisterial than its title wants
it to take credit for, while the
album’s latter half whips itself
into a frenzy of shimmering
guitars, electronic effects and
dreamy vocals. The 90s
revival starts here… maybe,
but It Hugs Back is also
a warm, fuzzy species all of its
own, and well worth cozying
up to. 

4 stars 4 stars 4 stars 4 stars

Safe & Sound | SANDS 009

Reviewed by Jason Draper
<< Back to Issue 415