It’s a strange day for ‘serious’ music fans when the best tunes [I]NME[/I]’s heard in ages don’t come swooping down from the heavens where Buckleys Snr and Jr have set up their own, posthumous, version of Tin Pan Alley, but from the Lower East Side of New York where the ashes of The Velvet Underground [I]et al[/I] are reconstituted regularly and well these days.
Meet The Moldy Peaches – the latest in a short line of exciting new bands spending quality time in the gutter, ignoring the stars. They’re friends with the sensational Strokes and, frankly, if it weren’t for their big up, and the Peaches’ brash, bratty Big Apple pedigree, we may not have made it far past ‘Lucky Number 9’, the first track on their extremely amusing and often brilliant debut LP. Oh, and the references to crack, porn and hermaphroditism. And the stupid outfits.
This is because the Peaches are, at their core, a terminally lo-fi indie band of the kind we now sneer at. Stripped of its [I]South Park[/I] vibe, this album has already come out on K Records – the home of US twee – a few dozen times in the last decade. The very first line of of ‘Lucky Number 9’ sets out its stall at the fanzine convention: “Indie boys are neurotic”, it croons over a primitive guitar’n’drum chug, “makes my eyes bleed”. Meanwhile, ‘Little Bunny Foo Foo’, the first song Kimya Dawson and Adam Green ever wrote together is a kiddy-punk deconstruction of a nursery rhyme. ‘What Went Wrong’ is a Ween tantrum played by special needs riot grrrls.
The sweeter moments are affecting enough. But what separates The Moldy Peaches from the precious indie massive, is the fact that they’re far more Harmony Korine’s [I]Kids [/I]than Enid Blyton’s. ‘Downloading Porn With Davo’ clatters along in a ramalama bar boogie vein, while Kimya and Adam yelp Jools Holland-proof lyrics like “Sleeping in a bed between A and B/Sucking dick for Ecstasy”, as surreal as Internet porn itself. Elsewhere, debut single ‘Who’s Got The Crack’ is a naïve absurdist shoutalong about, well, crack, that recalls the charm of The Flaming Lips’ ‘She Don’t Use Jelly’. The undisputed high point is, however, ‘NYC’s Like A Graveyard’ which cocks a sardonic snook at their hometown while drawing joyously on the garage punk that still percolates beneath its filthy pavements. Marvellous.