- 24 Feb 23
Superb third album from London post-punk quintet.
Shame emerged from South London in January 2018 with a devastatingly good debut album, Songs Of Praise, but have since been overshadowed by IDLES in the league table of angry, left-leaning post-punk upstarts, a slightly difficult second album, 2020’s Drunk Tank Pink, not helping their cause.
This brilliant third album reaffirms their quality, while adding a broader sound palette. It’s not that they’ve turned into Pink Floyd, but there is less of the adolescent scatter-gun rage and more pointed, nuanced anger, wonderfully channelled by legendary producer, Flood.
There’s still fury aplenty, mind you: witness the raw ‘Six-Pack’, or the staccato beats, muscular guitars and strident vocals of ‘Alibis’, which is the sound of a band hitting peak flow (think Mark E. Smith fronting Bloc Party).
‘Orchid’ sounds like a downbeat Lloyd Cole, which is a great thing, while the relative restraint of the closing ‘All The People’ is more Velvet Underground than Sex Pistols, the guitars chiming rather than grinding. There’s also much to admire in the beautiful dirge of ‘Adderall’, or the shouty Greek choruses of ‘Yankees’, the latter featuring some wonderfully serrated guitar.
It’s only February, but this is already one of 2023’s great records. Read our chat with the band's Seán Coyle-Smith here.
Out now via Dead Oceans.
The new issue of Hot Press is out now, starring Inhaler and The Academic.