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London Islington Red Eye

If [a]Cay[/a] add little that's new to the great scheme of things, it matters not; for one night only the gutter finds its voice and does its damnedest to spew dirty garage punk filth over as wide

London Islington Red Eye

The scarlet-haired grunge urchin with a guitar as big as herself has a bone to pick. Once it was [a]Janis Joplin[/a], nowadays any woman with a set of iron lungs and 40-a-day habit is likened to [a]Courtney Love[/a]. [a]Cay[/a]'s sandpaper-throated singer Anet Mook has already had it up to her neck with such comparisons - and this before the band have even released a proper single.



But the similarity is too great to ignore and [a]Cay[/a] are simply following in that great Camden tradition of stealing what's best from America and coating it in north London grime. Just as the criminally underrated Silverfish did in the early-'90s, [a]Cay[/a] sink their teeth into the devil's own blues and spit it out in ragged chunks of molten grunge. Tonight's gig is an almost primordial rampage over a wasteground of tumbling, speed-crazed tribal drumming and jittery super-fuzzed guitars that attempt to pound the songs to a point of singularity at that place where Gang Of Four meets Nomeansno.



All the while Anet does the cathartic soul-bearing thing - spitting venom or murmuring bitter nothings to herself. If [a]Cay[/a] add little that's new to the great scheme of things, it matters not; for one night only the gutter finds its voice and does its damnedest to spew dirty garage punk filth over as wide an area as possible. There's the rabid 'Better Than Myself' and the skewed funk brat attack of 'Dragonfly' before they momentarily forget themselves, coming over all introspective on 'Reasonable Ease'. Then you get suspicious that they're merely trying to impress the industry hordes at the bar. But the next explosion is only ever seconds away and 'Nature Creates Freaks' churns through a mess of scrag-end punk like a tractor ploughing a field of broken glass.



[a]Cay[/a] aren't going to save rock'n'roll but, like Idlewild, they make it seem nasty, noisy and fun again. Now wash your hands please.

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