2 March 2014
Future Of The Left - How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident
Sometimes albums come out of nowhere and for me this was one I was not expecting at all. Future Of The Left are a post hardcore band from Cardiff in Wales. This is their fourth album which came relatively hot on the heels of "The Plot Against Common Sense", hence why I was not expecting it. It was a crowd sourced release via the Pledge Music website. When it was put up, the album made its target within 5 hours of being announced. Considering that they had only released an album less than 12 month previous it just shows how fan can be hunger from new material and how a band can be good in supplying that demand. However, was the release any good or was it a case of half cooked songs being released too soon?
"Bread, Cheese, Bow & Arrow" starts off with a huge riff and drum combo, but the vocal delivery is like a crazed Beastie Boys post hardcore hybrid. It is enjoyable, but I cannot find myself thinking anything about it other than it is just decent; even when it gets to the inevitable breakdown and riff wave. "Johnny Borrell Afterlife" is next with a more indie hardcore vibe like a restrained Biffy Clyro; it is a much better song and improves the mood instantly. "Future Child Embarrassment Matrix" follows with all the grace and tact of a brick coming through a window, it talks about a ladies sexual preferences and how it all works; musically it starts off loud and noisy, then it descends into a slow and brooding noise-fest. It is also about 3 minutes too long and as the song is just under four minutes long, I guess it should have really been left off. It ends really well though and maybe it should have kept on that part. "The Male Gaze" is beige at best and that is the nicest thing I can say here, whilst "Singing Of The Bonesaws" is actually quite good fun with its silly English accent talking about the shitty end of the music industry; it is strangely hypnotic that makes up for the last couple of tracks, but only just....
"I Don't Know What You Ketamine" is the sixth track on this album, starting off with a large slab of noise riffs, but it is done in an indie style with a little too much of the post hardcore kept to the side. It is quite frustrating that the band has toned down some of what made them crazy and very exciting. "French Lessons" has a feel of Fight With Apes and is very chilled, it is a good number and much more interesting that a lot of what has gone on before hand on this album. Then comes "How To Spot A Record Company" which has a lot of the old charm of the band, full of bile and venom, a great sense of anger in the song; you can tell they are really fucked off about their experiences with their record labels, bless their cotton socks. "Donny Of The Decks" is next with its fast paced drumming and is another step into their past to a certain degree, but it sounds better because they have found that distortion peddle that has been missing quite a lot of this album.
"She Gets Passed Around At Parties" is a strange beast and thankfully short, because this song could have outstayed its welcome. Maybe the band should have learnt that for some of the other songs on this album, such as "Something Happened" which tries to be ironic, complex and unusual; it is not, it is deliberately obtuse and to take a phrase from my youth - wank on toast. It is not being ironic, it is awful and this band can do much better than this. "The Real Meaning Of Christmas" is back to the Biffy-aping but at least they are not trying to be like a punk Noel Coward hybrid, decidedly average to the bitter end. "Things To Say To A Friendly Policemen" is a sub two minute piece which brings back the punk and heavy vibe which I love Future Of The Left for, also the solo with silly instruments is brilliant. However, ending the album is "Why Aren't I Going To Hell"; this starts off ok with a slow country vibe, but the band insists on placing strange noises over it at random places which are not needed, it is not the best song but do not make it any worse!
If I had have pledged music to this, I would have asked for my money back. It is not that the band has been tight with what they release, but it is one of the most disappointing albums I have had to listen to in recent times. As a band, they have regressed to a certain degree and the only way that I would go near them now is if the man behind Prancey Dog recommends anything else they release. Wasted chance to show the music industry that they were wrong to be dropped, truly a woeful experience and all the marks are for the couple of decent numbers.
1 out of ten - You really are touching the bottom of the barrel
Best track - How To Spot A Record Company
You can purchase the album from Amazon here
You can visit the Future Of The Left website here
You can listen to the album on Spotify here
Or here is the link for the album on Deezer
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