Monday, 11 May 2009

Projekt A-ko – Yoyodyne (Milk Pie Records)

‘A-ko seems to be near invulnerable with superhuman speed and strength.’ (Wikipedia article on anime character Eiko Magami).

Urusei Yatsura – they were so FAB! So let’s all cheer for the existence of Projekt A-ko – three quarters of Urusei who are maintaining the anime theme and still applying themselves to the art of teasing out cheerily discombobulating noise from guitars and things. Shout hip hip! and give a big scrabbly guitar squawk of joy at the arrival of Projekt Ako’s album - only two thousand years in the making but worth the wait.

‘Yoyodyne’ sounds like the electromagnetic field flexing and flipping out there in the cosmos, whipping across the universe to land jittering in your head with a Space Dust pop explosion. It’s robots with cracked hearts. Skullz and flowers. Gleefully tuneful turmoil. A big thrill. Attack, attack, attack!

Listen carefully and you can catch the sound of static, fizzling and squealing, fading in from another galaxy, getting closer…tune in and explode into ‘Hey Palooka!’ take a nosebleed nosedive into thrillingly crunchy fuzzpop. A good start.

‘Nothing Works Twice’ will have you reminiscing about dancing like a goon to ‘Kewpies Like Watermelon’ (and that time Fergus jumped into the crowd after a heckler git). Then it’ll have you dancing like a goon. ‘Supertriste Duxelle’ is a discordant sunshine pop wail, My Bloody Valentine doing bubblegum thrash. ‘Molten Hearts’ runs amok, a rollercoaster hijack, kicking up sparks of feedback, demanding you sing along with a thrill in your heart and mad eyes. ‘Otaku Blue’ very cutely plays around with ‘Union City Blue’, but with more squealing and squalling than Blondie ever managed, and with a mighty thunderousness that wraps rainbows round your heart and squeezes. Hard.

This album is crammed with manic pop spills that make me feel all energetic and effervescent and overexcited. It’s an electricity overload, delicious noise textured like years and years worth of paint built up in multi-hued blistered layers.

And then you come across ‘Yoyodyne (Scintilla II)’, twinkling up at you hidden amongst the mass of electric cables and distortion pedals. It’s all gentle and lilting, with strings and ‘ba da las’. Fergus’ and Elaine’s voices sweet and sincere and leaving you a little bit bereft at the end. It wrong-foots you, but is so very right.

“Here comes Kitten she’s vaguely smitten” – ‘Black Empire’

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