Black Futures - 'Never Not Nothing' Album Review
2. Love (feat. P.O.S)
3. Karma Ya Dig!?
4. Me.TV (feat. Bobby Gillespie)
5. Body & Soul
8. Tunnel Vision
11. Power Drunk
Sometimes new music can pass me by leaving me feeling cold and a bit non plusesed about it. I blame it on getting that little bit older, much preferring a quiet night in. I can't remember listening to Radio One without feeling abject horror at what I was subjecting my ears too. I'm finding too much comfort in Radio Two and a nice soothing acoustic Folk musician, especially with the volume at a nice sensible level and a good cup of tea.
Thank whatever God or Devil you'd like to pray to for the Black Futures to snap me out of this middle aged induced coma!
The London duo are a breath of fresh air to my ears, a real shot of energy to these dried up veins. I first heard of them from a friend who saw them supporting Frank Carter earlier this year. He mentioned two blacked garbed musicians and people in white hazard suits waving flags and encouraging the audience to participate in the craziness. Listening to their EP I was hooked and it's about time for us all to leap onto their debut album “Never Not Nothing”.
After a short instrumental opening that sets the tone of the album (‘N.N.N.’) ‘Love’ bursts into my eardrums. The song is all processed beats and high energy, a pattern that respects itself all the way through the album. This is not a put down in anyway at all. Sometimes when you’re hungry you want steak, other times you want a “Big Mac fries to go, get me Big Mac, fries to go” as PWEI sang on ‘Def Con One’, a musical touchstone for the Black Futures. The Poppies feel slips into ‘Karma Ya Dig!?’ too, its slower paced groove still carries some weight.
‘Me T.V.’ marches up with its floor toms and grinding bass with a blissed out sounding Bobbie Gillespie of Primal Scream talking about a manifesto for the generations who wish to turn away from the bullshit they’re being fed through mass media and seeing what they can do to improve on life.
It’s all Punk Rock with an Industrial edge. Imagine the previously mentioned Pop Will Eat Itself jamming with Nine Inch Nails on an album produced by the Chemical Brothers. There’s lyrical finger pointing (‘Youthman’ and ‘Riches’) as well as calls to arms (‘Tunnel Vision and ‘Gutters’) which could come across as preachy in other, less capable hands. Each lyric is welded to a hell of a tune, making you want to raise your fist in protest while dancing your ass off. ‘Trance’ is the sound of euphoria mixed into an avalanche of a tune and album closer ‘Power Drunk’ has the kind of swing you’d expect at some drunk gathering in the early hours of the morning.
“Never Not Nothing” is a call to arms delivered with the phatest of beats. It’s a throw back to the nineties where you could easily have bands bringing the party while still subverting you lyrically (but not in a blatant RATM kind of way). It’s got enough swing and swagger to make you long to hear it through a giant club PA so the bass and drums smack you square in the chest. As long as where we’re going the drinks are cheap, you’ll see more people wanting to be part of the Black Futures soundsystem party.
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Review - Scott Hamilton