WU LYF – ‘Go Tell Fire To The Mountain’

(album, LYF Recordings)

The most hyped new English group of the last decade? My editor certainly thinks so, judging by his ‘NME-boy’ jibes. Are we down with Chuck and the crew? Do we believe the hype? Let’s have a shuftie through the evidence: Four lads from Manchester called World Unite Lucifer Youth Foundation. Managed by an industry bigwig who once worked for Factory Too. Mastered by Mogwai’s producer, Paul Savage. Major label baiters and multi-album contract refuseniks. Until the product dropped (obviously), a tad tight lipped with the press. As likely to talk to the NME as The Guardian. Critically clichéd as an ‘art-rock-boy-band’.

All things considered, what can the average punter expect from the 10-track debut that is Go Tell Fire To The Mountain?

Visually, all looks spectacular – the vinyl artwork is a variant of that found on the CD, vaguely reminiscent of The Mighty Wah’s Word To The Wise Guy. A beautiful package it is to behold, replete with complimentary sticker, download code and tastefully apportioned art print (created by drummer, Joseph Louis Harland Manning). Recorded over three weeks in St Peters Church, Ancoats, and mastered by Paul Savage in Glasgow, GTFTTM is an exemplary exercise. Built with shards of sonic architecture recycled from Mogwai’s decade long refurbishment of Guadi’s cathedral in Barcelona, the album is both pseudo-religious in tone, and scripture-observant in the way it rocks the pulpit in deliverance of its hymnal vistas.

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Musically, sterling organ interludes keep the evangelical atmosphere taut throughout, and in spite of the Mogwaisms, WU LYF are more compatible with the clarity and beauty of purpose found with Explosions In The Sky. There’s none of Mogwai’s filthy low-end here, no fuzz-tonal bottom register. Elsewhere there are snatches of Postcardesque jingle-jangle, the merest suggestion of the wide-screened-intention of the Triffids’ Born Sandy Devotional, and the stubborn understains of PiL’s Metal Box. Vocally, WU LYF’s collective love of SST Records era US hardcore comes on like a gang of indecipherable young Tom Waits clones chancing their arms at barbershop quartet harmonies, Henry Rollins style. There are no songs to speak of, no tunes to hum; it’s the kind of record you lie around in awe of, getting stoned to, or fucking through. It reminds me of near life experience I once had. Deja WU LYF.

Simon Morgan

Punk rocker, folk strummer, baby social worker, and parent, Simon Morgan is a polymath. He has brought you many things in his time – as Jean Encoule he created the legendary trakMARX website, but has now stepped from behind his alter ego to reveal his true, vibrant colours. Despite having gone prematurely orange, he maintains a youthful open-mindedness, which he combines with his vast experience and ready wit. His debut solo album, Domestic Abuse is now available. “Spirit/Is Life/It flows through/The death of me/ Endlessly/Like a River/ Unafraid/Of Becoming/The sea.” (Gregory Corso)

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Originally posted 2011-06-14 08:33:48. Republished by Blog Post Promoter

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