In spite of the fountains of booze, the late, late nights, the greasy snacks and the aggressive attention from an endless queue of sexy pervs, the editorial team of BarLifeUK is buffer than you could ever imagine.
Our stomachs are as hard as a blacksmith’s anvil; our buttocks are solid oak and are biceps are like steel-belted barrels full of rocks. The editor once spatchcocked a chicken on his thighs. And he didn’t use a cleaver; he simply glared muscularly. In short, we’re each built like Thor, the Norse god of thunder – only more ripped.
At the time of writing, the spring sun is blazing, and that’s all the excuse we writers need to rip off our singlets and sit in a beer garden bare-chested and glistening (having oiled each other down first thing this morning).
All we need now are new tunes to which we can flex our exquisitely carved man-tits while we catch some rays.
What better than the eponymous release from Jonny, the collaborative project of Norman Blake, singer-guitarist of the divine Teenage Fanclub, and Euros Childs, former Gorky’s Zygotic Mynci front-man?
Even though it was released earlier this year, when the skies were slate-grey, there’s warmth to the album that’s better suited to this season, what with it being all golden harmonies and chugging guitars from two guys who love melody as much as they love the ladies about whom they so frequently sing.
As you would expect of Blake and Childs, there are plenty of musical nods to American bands of yore, most of whom favoured the definite article: The Byrds, The Monkees, The Doors, The Flying Burrito Brothers, and The Box Tops.
And there’s good humour. The whole affair is just so upbeat! True, it verges on the piss-taking on the excessive Cave Dance, the only track longer than three-and-a-half minutes, which swings with gusto for a short while in a cheeky, 1910 Fruitgum Company fashion (“Wear your hair long in the ancient style”) before slowing down and noodling for what seems like ages. And ages.
That indulgent track can be forgiven, though, because all those that surround it are so full of fun and tenderness that one might be mistaken into believing that the sun shines out of Jonny’s arse.
Right! Time to blast those quads…
BarLifeUK also recommends:
Foo Fighters – Wasted Light. America’s classiest rockers riff, roar and sound more than a bit like Queens of the Stone Age (which isn’t surprising given that Dave Grohl is a member of both bands – sometimes, at least).
TV on the Radio – Nine Types of Light. It’s the usual skill mix of rock, grooves and electro-pop, but it’s more laid back than the previous album, Dear Science. It’s better, too – and Tunde Adebimpe is still one of the most compelling vocalists around.