Art is Hard releases a split 7” from Something Anorak and Gorgeous Bully that sounds as good as it looks!
OK so this has been floating about in the ether that is the internet for sometimes and it does feel a bit churlish to start banging on about it now, but as the physical only dropped onto my doormat on Monday, and I’ve been playing it pretty much since then it seems like the write time to give it some love!
Housed in glorious red vinyl are four songs by two bands that, in their own way, have soundtrack a large portion of recent time. Gorgeous Bully’s 2015 Nobody Hates You as Much As You Hate Yourself EP, also on Art is Hard, is fifteen minutes of frenetic self-deprecating, self-loathing put to a 4/4 lo-fi garage pop sound. Plus is features one of the funniest/stupidest covers in recent times. Something Anorak’s Tiny Island, their debut album released on Howling Owl, was a sleeper hit of 2014 and their follow up Ageist EP proved they weren’t just a flash in the pan. So on paper this split 7” works well, but paper is one thing, it’s how it sounds that counts…
Gorgeous Bully get things going with Just Like Before. This is everything we’ve come to expect from Manchester’s finest. Distorted chugging guitars explode as soon as the needle hits the vinyl, then it slows down a bit and reverb leaden vocals juxtapose the musical onslaught. However as Just Like Before progresses things start to wind down and delicate melodies and rhythms come to the fore. The second Gorgeous Bully song is Beaucoup. Slow and slightly more melancholy than the opener, Beaucoup’s stand out moment is the when the lyric “It’s a year, It’s a day, and it all just fades away. Yeah it nice, just to waste, Let it all just wash away” is sung and the music just slightly drops off and Gorgeous Bully allow you take in the wonder of not only that lyric, but what it means too.
As you flip the record over, so does the vibe of the single. Something Anorak are purveyors in a form jangling indie that could have been released anytime of the last thirty plus years. My Kid has the feeling of a classic delta blues track, all scratchy guitars and pining lyrics. Shake Fist at Sky on the other hand is something else! A lyrically languid guitar riff kicks things off, then laconic vocals enter the mix. Everything continues along like this until the melodic ‘chorus’ starts. After this, we’re back with the riff and vocals combo and everything is warm and fuzzy again. This is the stand out moment on the single and possibly Something Anorak’s career to date.
Gorgeous Bully/Something Anorak Split 7″ is out now on Art is Hard Records