‘Paul’ – the sinister first track to be released from Dublin noisemakers Girl Band’s forthcoming debut album ‘Holding Hands With Jamie’ – doesn’t really get going until almost three minutes into its near seven-minute length. Frontman Dara Kiely delivers a spoken-word, Iggy Pop-meets-Mark E Smith sermon about various everday mundanities like moustaches, rashes, nylon, corn-on-the-cob and sugary drinks, as a simple, fuzzy bassline slides along and a primal rhythm is hammered out on a floor tom.
Every bar is soaked in suspense, drumming up the energy of Nick Cave in his Birthday Party suit, and then, out of nowhere, Alan Duggan’s guitar lets loose in a savage moment of chaos, like water quenching an unruly fire.
‘Paul’ is unsettling – something that’s only heightened when paired with a disconcerting video directed by Bob Gallagher (who also shot the video for the band’s cover of Blawan’s ‘Why They Hide My Bodies Under The Garage?’). It features the song’s titular character hiding his emotional pain beneath the costume of a smiling pig on a children’s TV show.
With influences fusing post-punk, noise rock and techno into something that’s uncompromisingly original, Girl Band are one of the most creative new bands going right now. ‘Holding Hands With Jamie’ (due for release on September 25 via Rough Trade) promises to be more unique and innovative still. Just don’t expect it to be a comfortable listen.