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5.0 out of 5 stars
Magnificent, 28 May 2012
In the words of 'Artrocker'
Singles for the week starting 28 May!Public Service Broadcasting
The War Room EP
(Test Card Recordings)
* * * * *
Here's something you don't get every day. Public Service Broadcasting have been granted access to British propaganda films from the World War 2 era, and they've sampled them, slapped echo on them, and whacked then in the middle of a digitally groovy post rock epic! Zoiks Scooby.
Luckily this two piece are smart and propulsive enough to give this idea legs. 'If War Should Come' shows off their dance chops, but also feeds emotionally off the narrative of the samples - as we're first told: "No one in this country wants war!" to a tentative and nervous build up, then blown away by a climactic guitar hailstorm, which pulls away to reveal the melancholy revelation; "I have to tell you now, this country is at war."
From here we're thrown into the atmosphere of the Blitz ("Soon the nightly battle of London will be on") to the broadly sci-fi breakbeats of 'London Can Take It', while 'Spitfire' feels almost like Orbital with glam rock hooks. Later, 'Waltz For George' depicts the weary soldiers staggering away from the beaches and boats from whence they fought. I'm not usually one for history lessons, but this EP is a dramatic juxtaposition - and it's genuinely moving. Propaganda or not, this has been a successful mission.