Asda release the live album of the year. This in itself is cause for applause, but wait until you hear it in full!
Asda Live at the Death Disko is actually Sebastian Gainsborough and Chester Giles at their most visceral and devastating. Despite sounding like a live recording in a League 2 level supermarket’s carpark, it was actually recorded on Thursday 28th July in Cosies in Bristol. This small venue had no idea what was in store for it, and its punters, when Gainsborough and Giles took to the stage.
“Get Traaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaashed!” is Giles’ early battle cry. This sets the tone for the whole piece. This is a note of self-discovery and, possibly, revolution. One reading of Giles’ lyrics is to just go out, take dubious substances and lose control as asda’s basslines take over your body. But this is a simple reading. Another one could be that asda wants to try and bring down the cultural shackles that we are attached to. “Instead of just doing what we’re told, how about try something different, even if it’s just for one night. If you don’t like it, you can go back to normal tomorrow” is the under lying message. But it’s not all revolution self-destruction, there are also elements of total comedy on display. Lines like “I was drunk on poverty” show that it’s not as serious was you thought.
Although this set is mainly full or feed-backing microphones, deep bassline and disjointed breakbeat it does contain a few ‘hits’. The most enjoyable is Spud-U-Like. This is taken from their rare as 10” three track EP. Like with all Giles’ best work it is a damming indictment on society and its disposable nature. The “99p pizza slices, tastes like school dinners” line shows how even food, the life blood of a species, has been brought down to base levels. And that no matter where we do, we’re still stuck in the social conventions we grew up in.
This isn’t an easy listen, and at time it’s not even that enjoyable, due to the confrontational nature of Giles’ vocals and Gainsborough’s music, but there is something, lurking under the covers, that is immediate and important. This could be one of the most important releases of the year, but due to it murky sound and lurid subject matter it will be lost in a soup of torpidity and clinical studio production. I know what I’d rather listen to…