Saturday 14th September 2013

Adam Stafford, Thank You So Nice, Et Tu Brute???

Cacophony. Howls, wails, buzzes and crackles, loud enough to wake the gods. They build and build before intoning with bile into the mic, “Rise, Lazarus, Rise.” Vocals fuzzed loud enough to obscure all but those but the most ferociously repeated lyrics.

They are uncompromising, unwieldy and just the slightest hint of unhinged. They don’t let a good tune stand in the way of making noise-statements, despite much of it being as catchy as your best pop.

In fact, many of the lyrics are not rhyming couplets but extended, freeform, engaging ramblings, read from a sheet of paper. The music roams between lighthearted, menacing and dangerous. Altogether, it is an Edgar Allan Poe nightmare. Welcome to the maelstrom.


Thank You So Nice

Pointy and jagged in both music and lyric. They sing of the injustice of the financial institutions. It is acerbic but danceable, which probably helps carry their message. Funk diatribes of the proletariat.

Forceful and occasionally frantically strummed guitars agree. Even when the subject matter shifts to late historians of note. In fact, it’s all pretty raucous and noisy, even when “this next song is about algorithms.” Of course it is. Why there aren’t more songs about algorithms is a mystery, frankly.

Our singer must have heard this last remark, because he follows the song with… an algorithm joke. “What do you call the drum pattern written by the US Presidential candidate for Democrats in the year 2000?” “An Al-Gore-Rhythm” Genius.

Thank You So Nice – punk made by the cast of I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue. There may not be higher praise.


Adam Stafford

Soundscapes crafted from multi-tracked guitars and vocals. Some vocals are beat boxed, some are sung. They create discords that subvert the flowing melodies. It is at once both comforting and discombobulating. But it is a rich sound that is created.

There are hints of East African guitars, as the intricate melodies dance over the high frets, falling into harmonies as they overlap with each other.

One song is entirely acappella. He crafts his voice into myriad beeps, yelps, tsks, duds, whilst his singing voice is pushed through as many octaves as possible. It is no easy thing to built a song from vocals alone without dwelling on that fact. But that doesn’t mean he’s not experimenting for the sake of it, nor that that is necessarily a bad thing.

The last song is an epic, freewheeling descent into madness, becoming more and more deranged and disjointed. The utter commitment to the performance that he shows, both throughout the set but most during this last song, has the audience enthralled. They know they are seeing something special.

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