But if there is a beef to pick with [a]Brassy[/a], it's this: for now, theirs is a bag of nuggets, rather than a well-tooled strand of gold....

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[a]Brassy[/a] aren’t pulling any punches tonight. “I gotta beef witchoo!” howls Muffin Spencer, the PE assistant you were always a little scared of, even though you desperately longed to be picked for her side. We’re not dancing hard enough, it appears. Sorry Miss! How about some detention? Being on [a]Brassy[/a]’s team looks like the best thing in the world right now. They’re one of the coolest small bands in Britain, a taut skein of Muffin‘s Noo Yawk moves, punky outlook and tuff beats, the province of their sensational drummer, who scratches vinyl with his spare hand. In Muffin, they have a sinewy, sculpted star. What’s more, [a]Brassy[/a]’s forthcoming LP will be the record that Elastica were too washed-up to make. Tonight, their trademark rallying cries – like ace new single ‘Work it Out’ or ‘BRASSY’ – are buffed to a high sheen, all deft blasts of new wave guitar and fresh grooves. But if there is a beef to pick with [a]Brassy[/a], it’s this: for now, theirs is a bag of nuggets, rather than a well-tooled strand of gold. They often lack the melodies to string together the shards of genius at their disposal. Songs like ‘That’s The Way’ are just one-liners, told in bursts of guitar that never resolve into a tune. And tonight, Muffin’s hectoring sounds less like an invitation, and more like bad temper. She wants us in her gang. But she’s gonna have to earn it first.