Mongrel - Better than Heavy
- Mark Robertson
- 19 February 2009
(Wall of Sound)
On paper this collaboration has huge potential, with a former Arctic Monkey, a Babyshambler and the Reverend and one of his Makers teaming up with esteemed rapper Lowkey. The results are, as Jon ‘Reverend’ Mclure declared previously, politically aware, enraged and often lyrically deft and astute, but musically, Better Than Heavy is more limp live jangling funk than apposite strident, furious tones.
‘Act Like That’, a vitriolic anti-violence tirade is underpinned with a spooky dubby backing and a rumbling, soaring ‘Hit From The Morning Sun’ has the requisite tension, but these flashes of magic are just too infrequent.
Mongrel hold a mirror up to Britain’s festering black heart overflowing with greed, poverty, violence and corruption and ask ‘surely we can do better than this?’, which is a worthwhile sentiment, but the message leaves you wondering why they didn’t have more fire in their bellies musically.