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Review: 'Paws'

-  Label: 'Ernest Jenning Record Co'
-  Genre: 'Dance' -  Release Date: '27.10.23.'

Our Rating:
Paws is the self-titled fifth album by Scottish and London based duo of Philip Jon Taylor and Joshua Swinney, who this time around chose to self-produce the album, mainly at Philip's home studio in the crofter's cottage he lives in. You can order special editions with fanzines and artwork, as well as standard vinyl, cd or cassette versions of the album.

This opens with the glitchcore sounds of Helen Black, although the music is glitchy as it comes, the vocals are sweet almost like they are for a Radiohead style indie anthem. When the drums and guitars come in it becomes a lot more forceful indie rock.

Plans asks if you can still hear the lyrics clearly at the back of a stadium gig, while dealing with paranoia and social disturbances, over a shifting tune that goes from rousing to clattering, into an almost folky breakdown, as they ram a lot of ideas into one short song.

Uncertain has twin vocals weaving through, the at times computer games style synth rock, punctuated by crisp drumming, a staccato bassline, while they ponder over all the uncertainty of modern living.

One Nation Under Dog has a massive guitar and bass groove, as the pulsating drums puncture any chance you have of thinking your exempt from the fire and brimstone of the coming collapse, wondering why we are all so cynical in these times, as they take aim at all sorts of enemies of progress to making this a better world, as you wonder how the UK can ever feel like one nation again.

Unfiltered has sweet sounding vocals, trying not to get too depressed at everything going on, as the at times glitchy hardcore indie punk races away.

Sound Aye No Bother is a doomy dirge like instrumental, with interesting drums and percussive interjections. Long sustained strings work around the central theme.

Elemental Attributes is quiet hushed electronics that start to build as the vocals start to ask why you drop phrases like Elemental Attributes into conversations, with guest vocalist Jane Blanchard as the pair question how their love is built, what is it that makes it work.

Starf___rs pronounces the word full on the record as they ask why you would want to be one, the odd structure and time signature belies the nature of the questions they are asking. This is certainly not a celebration of groupies.

S.A.H.D. is a slow seemingly sad celebration of stay at home dads, looking after the kids while you produce music like this, while wishing you could be as uncool as Billy Corgan as you hoard your misery.

The album closes with Disenchanted that really feels like it sums up how most of us have felt for most of the last 5 years at least, so they are tapping deep into the zeitgeist as they clatter off into the distance.

Find out more at https://www.thebandpaws.com/ https://orcd.co/d1ek5d0 https://wehavepaws.bandcamp.com/album/paws https://www.facebook.com/wehavepaws/

  author: simonovitch

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