Avant Hard

Avant Hard


Maybe you've heard the [a]New Radicals[/a]' irrepressible, celeb-dissin' single [B]'You Get What You Give'[/B], currently cutting a summer-sized swathe through the nation's consciousness....

Maybe you’ve heard the [a]New Radicals[/a]’ irrepressible, celeb-dissin’ single ‘You Get What You Give’, currently cutting a summer-sized swathe through the nation’s consciousness. Perhaps you’ve thrilled to its narky, joyous soul-pop gumbo and thought, ‘Hey, maybe I’ll buy the album’.

See? Told you. Brainwashed.

It’s easy to be suspicious of the [a]New Radicals[/a]. Judging from the swipes at pop stars, the industry and money itself that litter his lyrics, Radical-in-chief Gregg Alexander fancies himself a burr in the industry’s side. The truth is, he’d quite like it if the world and their niece bought his record because he wants to be as big as Prince. Or Billy Joel or Jamiroquai, his spiritual masters.

And so his record is a contradictory mash-up of polemic, white funk, loved-up yelping and nasty AOR guitar solos that wallops pop music into genuinely heartstopping new shapes for a bit…

…And then freefalls like a shot duck. The threesome of ‘Mother We Just Can’t Get Enough’, ‘You Get What You Give’ and ‘I Hope I Didn’t Just Give Away The Ending’ are as dazzling an opening sally to a long-player as you will hear in 1999. What follows is The Waterboys, The Cure, Hall & Oates, World Party, The Hothouse Flowers, The Rolling Stones, Pixies, The Afghan Whigs, Gay Dad, ELO, Bruce Hornsby & The Range and Steely Dan, mashed into a pap and deep-fried in hype.

A lot of the hors d’oeuvres, then, but it’s possibly a bit much on the digestion.