Super$hit

Ah yes, the "long awaited" collaboration. Aye, long awaited for me in that Ginger is on it, and er, thatís about it. Anyway, the mini-album gets pretty much straight to the point, so Iíll try and follow itís example. This is in your face, fuzzed up garage like rock. Thatís it. Itís not bad, and some people will try and tell you this is a work of genius and the saviour in the face of modern dross nu-metal. Nah, itís 6 decent tracks that come in, shake their thang, punch you in the face and then bugger off before you realised what happened. And you soon recover from it and get on with your life as if nothing had really happened.

Now, itís lazy I know, and a lot of important people (at least in their own eyes) will shout me down on this, but, that connection with the past. You know, the W word. Well sorry, but it does come into things. People and bands do rely on the past, and those connections whether you should make them or not are unavoidable. And this just isnít on a par with the past. Itís a decent enough collection, but as You Smell Canadian unwinds, thereís a whiff in the air which takes you W band bound. But itís just not as fresh and fragrent a whiff. Itís pleasant enough, you donít need the air freshner, but itís different. Like the difference between the whiff of cooking your own curry and the smell of one from a good curry house. The end productís the same, but itís just not quite the same. The chorus reminds me of Turning American, at least in the melody, and Star War Jr has a great simple, familiar riff. These two tracks are the standouts for me, the remaining 4 are decent, but the word supergroup has been used in conjunction with Super$hit, and to be honest, that carries with it too much weight and expectation. Itís good. Super? Not really. Fast One is a fast one, Wire Out is short sweet to the point, Dangermind is ok, and then thereís the Ruts cover of Crank It Up. Itís full on rockíníroll, plenty of distortion, fun while it lasts. But itís not life changing, nor does it pretend to be.


Interlock demo

Ok, so this is different. Good different. What weíve got here is a 4 - 5 piece band (live keyboard player it says), that offer up a fairly mixed bag of music within their own formula. The key here is diversity. For a start weíve got two vocalists, but unlike yer Raging Speedhorns, thereís one male and one female, and better still, they explore their naturally different vocal styles to create something different. Unique might be pushing it a bit, but itís different and itís good. But the music, the vocals, what are they like. Well, itís difficult to describe precisely. Generally youíve got your heavy heavy thing going on, the male vocals taking on a near death metal like thing, but then youíve got samples, and gentle music, and delicate female vocals offsetting everything. Then you throw it all up on its head and totally mess with the heavy peoples head by throwing in a song where the female vocals take centre stage and dominate a vastly more melodic, even bordering on the Portishead like musical trip. Personally I really like it simply cos they try something different and donít simply follow the most obvious route. Of course I also like it most when the female vocals dominate, but thatís me. You should know by now that despite what some people may think, I love the idea and the reality of women playing in all this sort of heavy or rock music, especially singing. That melody, that little twist. I like. And I like this.

The CD itself is strange. The tracklisting says 5, the CD says 7. Ah sorry, just worked it out by checking the web site. I think theyíve included a couple of extra tracks on here for me. Ah sweet. Anyway, how do you describe the music? Well, you canít - not in that simple pidgeonholed manner that people like. Thereís rapid machine gun fire guitar and double bass drum runs, a death metal growl, amibent and techno moments, and the winning moment for me of the addition of female vocals courtesy of someone called Emmeline May. It challenges you because there are so many seemingly disparate ideas going on - in the same song, and they manage to pull it all together. It shouldnít work you think, and probably in the hands of many it wouldnít, but Interlock seem to have figured out the key. Opening track Straight / Lunarcaustic is 6 minutes plus of time changes, techno dance metal sort of thing. Thereís some of those rapid fire moments that actually tend to work really well with techno - kind of itís so precise and almost mechanical that it integrates well. Itís a trait that is carried through Fifth World.

Standout track for me is Crash, which is the most mellow of thier moments - the Portishead thing comes through, not just the music, but also the concentration on the vocals. Birdman is a more darker new wave kind of thing - but still heavy. A ground that perhaps the likes of Paradise Lost have been looking for recently. And Children of the Rain is another spartan downbeat atmospheric thing. Itís great when this happens - thereís plenty of styles of music that have the potential for so much more if the bands would just allow themselves to explore it a bit, not worry maybe about whether theyíre seen by some to be straying outside the acceptable musical boundaries - take the chance. Itís good.

How theyíre going to position themselves within the musical climate is anyones guess. Theyíre probably well too heavy for some people that will appreciate those trippy moments, and maybe theyíre just too far out there for those that want it heavy all the time. They could well have found that contradictory position where theyíre an extreme band slap bang in the middle. Ozzy may have said that with their heavier music Sabbath couldnít really sing light and about love and whatever, not sure about the lyrics here, but they may well be trying to prove the notion that heavy and light doesnít actually mix in the same pot. It does - or it can.

Highly recommended, if of course youír prepared to try something maybe just a tad different to the norm. 6 quid for the CD, 3 for the tape. Itís worth it. This is different and actually interesting. No quick fixes, pleasure can lie in the long road.

Contact the band at Interlock, 46 Hall Road, Chadwell Heath, Ronford, Essex, RM6 4LJ.

www.interlock.freeserve.co.uk