Have to confess, I bought this on the strength of the reviews that were universally in praise of this album. The name of the band kind of gave me the feeling that we were dealing with a Hard Core band, but from the reviews, iit seemed that musically they went way beyond the traditional hard core band structure...
And so it is. From the gentle opening to Son The Father, which develops into a charged battlecry, to the final blows of The Chemistry of Common Life, you have a briliantly diverse, angry sounding record that has depth and quality that you will love.
It flows wonderfully well as an album and once it's on your ipod selection, it will stay there. I've had this album for over a year now and it's still one of those records that I could not and will not put back in my 'listened to' category.
Probably the only thing that will hold the record back is the charged sound of the singing which is probably the real connection with hard core, but musically it has a right to be in the collection of lovers of Green Day as much as those of us who love a bit of Minor Threat, Discharge, Gallows or Black Flag.
It's one of the best releases in the past three years and really does deserve its five stars review, so don't dally, buy it and you'll be playing it for ages.
I had not one clue as to who this band was when I ordered the album, but from reviews in Mojo and the like speaking of a fine work, I thought it was worth the plunge and how very glad I am that I did.
It's an abrasive sound, qith vocals that are delivered with real venom against a pretty rocking backtrack, but it has to be said that there is a real depth to their sound which reminds me of some of the best 80's punk, perhaps a little Minor Threat mixed with the quality songwriting of the Descendents. I'm not sure that's the best compliment I could pay this work, but I can tell you that it's a very consistent album with quality from beginning to end and will certainly be a record that will stand the test of time.
Great effort and well worth the full album download.
Now, aficionado of the hardcore genre I am not, and in fact my only real dalliances with the genre are with accessible artists such as Gallows, and slightly more credible ones like Poison The Well and The Bronx. And ... well, hardcore is hardcore, except here.
Like Metallica start both Ride The Lightning andMaster Of Puppets, so do F**ked (pesky censure) Up, with a folky, quiet, tension-growing section before cracking into the more expected (controlled) shouting and juggernaut guitars, but there is flute-based! Where F**ked Up deviate from their peers is that this plucked (plucky?), folky element is present throughout, as is a conscious level of progressive style.
The greatest shame is the album does not include a version of `Year of the Pig', their 18-minute part-folk, part-prog, entirely hardcore masterpiece, not even the 4-minute version available on Rough Trade Shops - Counter Culture 2007 is made available. But this gives reasonable impetus to buying that as well, so wise marketing, and one for the collectors I'd say.
The album definitely works best as a ensemble and as such I shan't single out any track for note, except perhaps to note that an 18-minute opus would have upset this collective balance, and perhaps, truth be told, the 4-minute condensation doesn't cut the necessary mustard.
In Pink Eyes the band surely have one of the most enigmatic of front man, particularly live, when he resembles a mildly saner Tim Harrington of Les Savy Fav, with whom comparison can certainly be made.
This is a breathless odyssey and rich in deviation from a dusty template, and serves well as a crossover album, which should endear them in sales but whether it is quite hard enough for hardcore fans may be an issue for hot debate.
2008 saw Fu**ed Up establish themselves as an increasingly talked about act; NME touted them (for at least five minutes) and they featured in a number of end of year `Best of...'s; notably reaching 17 in Pitchfork's end of year round up, whilst the Onion's A.V. Club made it their number two album of 2008 (with only TV On The Radio ahead of them).
This Canadian outfit emerged from Toronto's hardcore scene having formed way back in 2002 and have established a growing reputation as something special. Hidden World, their previous double album from 2006, attracted sufficient interest to ensure that they were signed to Matador.
Chemistry... is undoubtedly hardcore, but it's also ambitious, epic and hugely impressive. Opening track Son The Father sets the tone with it's furious call and response vocal, massive riff and strident condemnation of religion. Vocalist Pink Eyes (all the band employ bizarre monikers such as 10,000 marbles) gravelly vocal style won't be to everyone's taste, but adds to the sense of anger in tracks like Crooked Head. Relatively straightforward tracks like Days Of Last, mix with delicate instrumental numbers like Golden Seal. The band's three guitarists are well used, laying down dense, complex textures, notably on No Epiphany. Comparisons have been made to Husker Dü and these are valid; not perhaps in terms of sound, but in terms of sheer ambition and desire to really redefine their genre. Chemistry... is a hugely rewarding record; it's complexity ensures that you constantly notice different elements, and it deserves to reach a wider audience.
Fu**ed Up's label, Matador are very good at offering free MP3s of their acts and selections from this album have been available of late. Finally, it's pleasant to buy a CD where the album art is a thing of beauty; 2008 seems to have been a year of interesting releases marred by rubbish artwork.
i bought this album on a whim after reading other reviews on amazon and a brief listen online, and this is a deep album very punky and fresh with mellow undertones of love and underlying stories to the often fast and trashy music, if you were to ask me to compare them to any other band i can honestly say i would struggle, but all in all a well rounded original album worthy of 5 stars
This was a lot slower to grow on me than Hidden World but it has managed to ensconse itself in my brain-folds now and it's there to stay. It is kind of like Marillion or something in places, but with a gravel voiced fat man shouting his guts out over the bits of flute and cerebral progging.