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The body of christ the legs of tina turner
A blood-curdling mad scientist of a record
Celina Murphy, 19 Aug 2010
Unfortunately for Dublin foursome Fight Like Apes, there is a downside to taking a nation's rock scene by storm, and it's that you have to keep on storming. Die-hard FLA fans have been waiting an excruciating 24 months for a sophomore slice of shameless synth rock and won't settle for anything less than lyrical brilliance and musical mayhem. The album title alone is a lot to live up to.
Well relax fans, it's a beaut. For album number two, the Apes have drafted in Andy Gill, guitarist with Leeds post-punk outfit Gang of Four, who seems to have suggested they record the album live, a move that pays off from the very first thump.
'Let's Talk About Our Feelings' is textbook FLA: grinding keys and furious drums rear their heads whilst May Kay and Pockets' vocal to-ing and fro-ing has never made more sense.
Along with their accomplished arsenal of freak-out guitar solos, trippy keys and banshee hooks, the Apes sashay right into genius territory courtesy of a handful of kitsch samples from B-movies and instructional films from the '50s and '60s. 'Pull Off Your Arms And Let's Play In Your Blood' kicks off with the pubescent crackle of "Say Kay, next Friday there's going to be a weenie roast…" while 'Waking Up With Robocop' goes a step further, as audio from 1965 Sci-Fi adventure Wild Wild Planet actually becomes part of the narrative.
FLA write lyrics so true-to-life they could only be ripped from genuine experience, ranging from the whimsical ("I met this guy in Texaco/ I wish I'd never let him go") to the delightfully poignant ("I can't keep writing songs about cutting you up"). Elsewhere, 'That God You Weren't Thirsty' is a rare moment of vulnerability for May Kay and although it builds to a signature Apes climax, it's a brave move for sure.
As one lyric suggests, this is a 'cans in bed' album, and you only have to look at a song title like 'Katmandu (Face It, You're Caviar, I'm Hotdogs)' to see these music makers have little time for the finer things in life. They're writing about the slightly X-rated lives of the broke and mischievous, a nice change from the slicker than slick production nerds and bedroom stars we've been seeing so much of in 2010.