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Ester Segarra

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Album Of The Month July 2001
Stand up Guy (NI) | ‘Has Anything You’ve Done Made Your Life Better?’ Demo


Finally, the demo from the best new band to hit Northern Ireland in donkeys.

A 13 minute, three track bombshell presented in exquisite artwork, printed properly, and a professionally reproduced cd as well, so full marks for aesthetics.

At least running over time and budget in the studio has reaped rewards – the sound is full and all sonic elements are balanced nicely, each afforded its own space in the mix.

Press play, prepare to have face blown off by the devestation of the opening riff; it really sets the tone for the whole cd with its hugeness of sound, its massiveness of weight, and its overbearing pathos.

One of the things I always remark upon when seeing them live is how the music can be felt as well as heard: it’s just full of emotion and conviction and I am elated to say that not only does the cd convey this, it actually betters it.

You just have no idea how many times you will play “Constant Gossip of the Workplace”. Many bands may be namechecked, but the startling thing is that this cd actually has alot in common with ol yorkshire doom!

You know how unbearably heavy and claustrophobic “The Silent Enigma” is – yes, this is on a comparable scale for its complete desolation and depression.

Dirgesome, monolithic riffs repeat in hypnotic drones accompanied by suitably doleful percussion building to climactic avalanches of guitar, god it’s beautiful.

I remarked before about a Soundgarden vibe and I think “Vice Versa” brings a little bit of “Burden in my Hands” to mind, but only in terms of feel.

One of the things that impresses me so much (and tells me signature is but a hair’s breadth away) is the attention that the band pay to dynamic. Tension builds, builds, builds and then is not only exhaled but bellowed forth, before winding down, as if waiting for the next fit of emotional trouble to ascend to the surface.

A masterpiece of superb musical choreography, it’s spacious and wide… you just have to listen to see what I mean.

I knew these guys were the shit the first time they blew my band at the time off the stage. Remember where you heard them first.

This motherfucker’s on the playlist for my funeral.

-Earl Grey ::: 1/7/01



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