I first came across the Pixies in the 5th form at school when I was given a tape with Surfer Rosa on one side and Sonic Youth’s Sister on the other. In the days before the internet, finding out about a band was simply down to what appeared in that week’s NME. In the case of the Pixies, all I had was the name and the sound of their music; the loud QUIET loud, the shouting, screaming and lyrics about penises, incest and big big love. They sounded like they could actually be pixies, but slightly scary American, deviant ones that probably fiddled with themselves at the bottom of the garden.
Electrelane sit in the same soundsphere (their music was produced by the same Steve Albini), but they were the English girls next door, an equally powerful sound, quiet and loud in extremes, with mounting screaming lyrics, venomous Coltrane sax, frenetic piano but with a more sublime underlying beauty.
Last night I saw them for the first time, at the Scala, after a three year hiatus and they absolutely blew me away. Every song I could have hoped for was played, including cover versions of ‘Small Town Boy’ and to close Springsteen’s ‘I’m on Fire’.
They play XOYO next month and Field Day so if you can you really should check them out. I’d almost offer a money back guarantee.