Review : Late Of The Pier - Fantasy Black Channel
GuardianFantasy Black Channel is the most thrilling British debut of the year for its spirit of invention, its surfeit of ideas and its ear for a good tune. The Castle Donington four-piece may be young pups but they reference prog, heavy metal, Roxy Music, Blur, Aphex Twin and Gary Numan - often all in the same song. Bathroom Gurgle begins as synth-pop, but after two minutes it suddenly bursts into falsetto spandex rock. Then it shifts genre and tempo again, as versatile singer Samuel Dust yelps: "Put your hands on your waistline and shift your body to the bassline." Every time you play this album, you'll find a new favourite song, riff or wayward moment....full text
CourantIt isn't too early to begin assembling a year-end best-of list -- and no matter what else happens in the next 12 months, the debut from British quartet Late of the Pier will be on it.
To say they sound a little like Muse fronted, alternately, by Gary Numan and Prince, is to indulge in the sort of facile comparison that gives music journalism its bad rep. But as is usually the case with great bands, it's what Late of the Pier are not that makes them such a compelling listen.
The prog-rock elements that begin the disc and surface throughout help to make the familiar sound fresh -- you might have to go back to Roxy Music for such successful distortions of the pop form as the manic single "Heartbeat" and the robotic "Space and the Woods."...full text
DrownedinsoundFor every word you read below, consider it signifying one I am eating after, basically, assuming Late Of The Pier’s debut album would be a predictable post-nu-rave collection of bleeped-up synth-rock and sub-par screamo vocals.
And I don’t really know why I ever figured that would be its pigeonhole of best fit – perhaps because I initially came to Fantasy Black Channel thinking that it couldn’t be 12 songs as great as the superlative ‘Bathroom Gurgle’; that the youthful Castle Donington four-piece would have loaded almost all their eggs into that basket, keeping a few aside for the re-release of the also-pretty-ace ‘Space And The Woods’ single, and hit auto-pilot for the remainder of their tiresome filler-dripping debut. Wrong.
Sure, there’s a degree of debt owed to Klaxons and their breakthrough debut album – Late Of The Pier are colourful sorts visually and, more pertinently, aurally – but much like the Mercury winners there’s much more to this record than initially meets the ear. And much of that much more is rooted in a decade barely remembered, if at all, by the record’s makers. And the one before it, come to think of it....full text
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