Monday, 30 March 2009

Review - Filthy Dukes - Nonsense In The Dark

Filthy Dukes - Nonsense In The Dark

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5 out of 10

Does anyone like the Human League? Well, get stuck into this lot. If you have any doubts that the 1980s are currently de rigueur for musical body snatchers, then one listen to this debut album should confirm things. An alternative title might be 'Disco of the Living Dead', as amongst the full-on blips and ultra-violent Casiotone riffs almost the entire dance oeuvre of that benighted decade is distilled for your clubbing pleasure. There's Numan. There's Erasure. There's Kraftwerk. There's Toni Basil. There's.hang on, Toni Basil? Oh yes. Drown in those electro-handclaps and yelping cheerleader backing vocals. These atmospheric exhumations tend to overshadow the actual guest appearances from Orlando Weeks, Brandon Curtis, Tommy Sparks and others. 'Melancholy epic' could just as easily be 'diet Depeche Mode'. 'Potential pop smash' may actually end up on a remastering of the Ghostbusters soundtrack.

Whether Rat Scabies' drum contribution to You Better Stop is programmed or played we are not told, but it's one of several ironic titles on show; Cul De Sac being the top of the pile of aftershave in this particular gents', which manages to convey almost exactly the feeling of being lost in an anonymous, deserted estate somewhere. Rock is pilfered, too, with the intro to Rush's Spirit of Radio making an appearance in the KP snack-referencing Light Skips Cross Heart and the Scorpions seemingly providing the start to the strongest track on offer, Tupac Robot Club Rock - a thundering hip-hop/glitch monster with in-your-face verbiage from Plastic Little. But it doesn't do to think about dance music too much. As Mr. Sparks says in his Euro-titan Messages, 'turn your mind inside out - nothing really matters when you're out of control'. If you want to soundtrack that, Filthy Dukes are as good as any.


1. This Rhythm
2. Elevator
3. What Happens Next
4. You Better Stop
5. Messages
6. Tupac Robot Club Rock
7. Nonsense In The Dark
8. Cul-De-Sac
9. Light Skips Cross Heart
10. Don't Fall Softly
11. Twenty Six Hundred
12. Poison The Ivy
13. Somewhere At Sea

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