Give Blood





When an album is said to have been recorded in five days, live to tape, and mixed in two days, the results could be either brilliant or rubbish. In the case of Give Blood from Brakes, they were able to capture a level of excitement in such a short period of time that takes most bands quite a few days, weeks or even months longer. This being said, Brakes may be the ultimate indie supergroup. Made up of Tom and Alex White from Electric Soft Parade, Eamon Hamilton from British Sea Power and Marc Beatty from Tenderfoot, these four friends have put together one fantastic collection of eclectic tunes. Ranging from f*cked up country ballads to 10-second punk tracks, you'll be reaching for your bottle of Ritalin after digesting all sixteen tracks (which you can accomplish in less than half an hour). The moods change just as quickly as the tempos, which makes for one of the most entertaining albums of 2005. It becomes quite evident that many of the sources for Eamon's lyrics are angrily pointed at his frustrations with the music industry and hangers on. Oh, and don't get him started about people talking during gigs. This source of irritation rears its head during "Hi How Are You" and even more so throughout the brilliant "Heard About Your Band". The latter will make the phrase "whatever dude" rocket into your daily vocabulary. While many of the album's tracks are quick punk-rock-pop ditties in the vein of the Pixies, the band has no problem shifting gears into country with their cover of the Johnny Cash/June Carter track "Jackson". Then there is their booty-shakin' DFA-sounding "All Night Disco Party". Filled with bite-sized morsels of pop greatness, Give Blood shows Brakes as much more than just a side-project. If only more bands could cram this amount of wit, musical diversity and lyrical fun into thirty minutes of music.

Brakes
Rough Trade

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Give Blood