Appearing towards the tail end of last year Shady Nasty have focused on live performances with their first track – Upwardsbounds for those of us further afield appearing only last week.
The spikes in Upwardsbounds have the audience reflecting of maths-jazz, yet there is something more intrinsic to the material and underpinning the free-form nature of the composition lays a contemplative commentary of the silos of the world in the 21st Century with individuals being invited to scurry like rats in a drain to their preferred escape point, only to discover they are each trapped in the same maze, just with different starting points.
In Upwardsbounds one gets an aural sense of the closing chapters of Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four and the inevitable closeting in Room 101 at the Ministry of Love.
Shady Nasty do not seek to make the journey for the listener an easy ride as they ensure each step of the way requires fullest engagement, though if you stick with it, you will find a pernicious contemplative which will find you looking forward to more of their exorcisms.
The closing track of the five on the release (available on bandcamp) Blank Mange accounts for three quarters of the running time of I Drew A Ghost and is almost twice the length of the next longest track, running as it does for a shade over six minutes.
Longer term readers will know that I have a preference for shorter songs by instinct and the fact that there was choice of sharing one that lasts less than a minute and a half is a good indicator that I do think getting to know All These Animals is time well spent.
The sombre instinct of All These Animals is encapsulated in Blank Mange which drips like moss in a dank cellar around the ears as the low-fidelity recording spreads seeps into the bone marrow, leaving the listener engrossed in the flickering shadows that appear, abruptly ending with a frozen half bar, akin to a ‘…’ in written prose – leaving the mind creating its own concluding stanzas. Does that make the I Drew A Ghost EP a Schubert’s Symphony No. 8 in B minor in the making, were there other tracks and instrumentation that have also never quite been finished, is this still a work in progress never to be concluded? – one is left to ponder.
With only one release a year, dating back to 2013, this being only the second EP – I seem to have caught up with All These Animals in a loquacious biennial as there is plenty to digest within the five tracks. I am already looking forward to the two or three track single which I anticipate in 2017.
The flip side to the AA side single by the English indie-rock trio Everafter was featured earlier this year prior to its release.
Everafter have appeared on the site fairly frequently over the past couple of years, Last Boat To St Helena is the first ballad I have featured and evidences their rising confidence as they explore something very different to their normal style and deliver it with considerable self-assurance.
Word arrives that they are putting together tracks for a new LP and whilst I do always enjoy their more punchy sounds, I do hope they are able to express this more considered style in one of two of the tracks on the planned release.