The Wildhearts: 21st Century Love Songs album review

Ginger Wildheart suggested he saw this acclaimed 2019 follow-up Renaissance men as an opportunity for his group to “be creative”. That seems to be an understatement.

At first glance, there are ten 21st century love songs here. But inside those tracks are about 121 hooks, 68 choruses, 27 gags, 40 swear words, 99 riffs, 14 silly samples, and probably a partridge somewhere in a pear tree.

That said, he was probably scared to death by the splenic intensity of these songs, built via a sweep of supercharged supermarket styles: bits of hardcore here, grunge there, a hit or six from the power-pop aisle. , a few swerves in the thrash and a nifty pocket of some rockabilly while the cashier wasn’t looking.

Even though its never-ending feeling of restlessness sounds like particularly hyperactive prog-metal at times, for the most part it makes every other record released this year sound hopelessly trivial to easy listening in comparison.

Selected highlights are the way SleepawaThere flippers between a rock anthem from a stage in love, a Motorhead-style metal rant, an explosion of power-pop positivity, rockabilly boogie and a hardcore singing assault, before ending with the stoned, melancholy and singing conclusion: ‘As the dog looked up at the plane and I laughed at his obvious confusion / He turned to me and said … fish don’t know they’re in the water. ‘

These six words, spoken in Ginger’s South Shields brogue, are an introduction to another potential live-action staple, you do you, a stomping and vulgar punk anthem at the time that sneers: ‘Everyone is an expert these days. ‘

A positive reception, hopefully, will also bring comfort to the subject of Sort your fucking shit out, which speaks to ‘David’ (the birth name of our sometimes struggling singer), before the whole group shouts: ‘Oh ! Sort it out! If you don’t, you are a jerk!

Just as much rage is directed outward, and in an equally original way, from the tilt of the opening title song on heteronormative modern rock radio to observations such as: “We are stuffed with filth from childhood, ‘while it rages Institutional submission before introducing the memorable insult ‘c ** t by association‘.

Shortly after, the instructions, he notes that “the right continues to dream of an autocratic dystopia”. And that only scratches the surface of a record so full of energy, anger, humor and artistic invention that it is clearly in pain.

Rock ADHD, anyone? A genre that the Wildhearts can certainly call their own.


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Grace D. Erickson

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