Monday, 22 June 2009

The Phenomenal Handclap Band

I've been meaning to get around to blogging this for a few weeks but have been putting it off, just cos it's a hard album to do justice to in words… you SO need to hear this!

I made a list of things this album reminded me of, and it included Scissor Sisters, 'Rapture'-era Blondie, Faze Action, Steely Dan, 'Murmurs'-era Pink Floyd, Blood, Sweat & Tears and Tom Tom Club… even mid-’70s Rolling Stones, 'Afternoon Delight' and, oh, Lord knows what else.**

Not all at once, mind. This is an album that ranges from the Caravan-esque psychedelic jazz-rock of opener 'The Journey To Serra Da Estrella', to the punk-funk neo-proto-rap of '15-20' (which you've probably heard), to the glittery space disco of the single 'You'll Disappear' (out next week) to the blue-eyed soul of 'Baby'. It's an album that I suspect grew up in the 1970s, wearing pale blue flared, brushed denim jeans and riding a Schwinn Stingray… and I can so get to that. Yes I can.

Unlike many of the artists featured on this blog, TPHC are an actual proper band, an eight-piece outfit based in New York's Lower East Side... and the best news is they're touring the UK in July. They're at Bristol's Start The Bus on July 7 and I'll certainly be there, I suggest you (ahem) "check 'em out"* if you get a chance. I'm sure the dates are on the obligatory MySpace link…

Oh yeah, and some of the band are also in TV On The Radio. If that's of any interest.

*one of my least favourite expressions in the English language. SO over-used.

**I'm going to add Love & Rockets to that list as well, but only around the time of Kundalini Express (their post-gothic, pre-stadium, psychedelic pop phase)

About the label: This is brought to you courtesy of Tim 'Love' Lee's Tummy Touch, which has always been a bit more miss than hit, to these ears… but remember they brought us Groove Armada way back when, and now they've brought us this, so we'll forgive 'em.

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