Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster: Horse Of The Dog

Get your motor running...

Some bands only sound, unwittingly, like a car-crash: [a]Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster[/a] (i)aspire(/i) to be one. That is, they plan to drive their own customised mutant band-wagon down any blind alley that will have them. This is to their credit. In times when the flu-rock caucus headed by Coldplay maintains its iron-grip on the centre-ground and the fringes are over-flowing with over-stylised garage bands, the ‘ Disaster’s spunky amateurism and self-destructive ethos puts them at the front of the ‘Wacky Races’ rock-grid on bravado alone.

Clearly they have no plans to outstay their welcome. ‘Horse Of The Dog’ only lasts 26 minutes, and most of those are spent rehashing the deranged blend of At The Drive In, The Cramps and the [a][/a] which fuels them. Odds on the ‘Disaster capturing the hearts of Mondeo-driving floating voters remain slim.

That established, on this form their crazed amphetamine psychobilly could clearly reduce any student union bar in Christendom to rubble. The guitars are loud, primitive and classic-sounding; the drums rub shoulders boisterously with the bass. And then there’s wafer-thin singer Guy McKnight, who, more showman than shaman, does everything but bleed for the cause.

(i)”I keep falling through holes in the floor”(/I),he screams on ‘Fishfingers’, clearly remembering the time he attempted to walk the length of Brighton Pier. By a final ‘Presidential Wave’ it sounds as if the groups fenders are bent out of shape, their fan-belt’s gone and Guy has realised he’s not so much a ringer for Richard Ashcroft as well, Ian Astbury.

“(i)You gotta look into my eyes, baaaay-beee!”(/I) he howls as the band wade through an ominous blues swamp that threatens to leap out of the speakers and rip your preconceptions out one by one. Hmmm. The indie-‘A’ roads have been negotiated. The freeway of potential Cult-status lies ahead.Get your motor running…

Jason Fox