Wild Beasts - Smother
Hayden Thorpe and co deliver sleazily brilliant third album
Having covered back alley frottaging and the pleasures of ‘girls from Whitby’ on their 2009 release Two Dancers, the four-piece from Kendal have peeled back the net curtains even further for Smother, casting a pale light on the kinks of British sexuality. ‘New squeeze, take off your chemise, and I’ll do as I please,’ Hayden Thorpe warbles at the start of ‘Plaything’. The same queasy feeling of mixed pleasure and regret that Pulp captured at their peak is all over this album like the smell of unwashed bedsheets. Musically, Two Dancers’ winning formula of undulating melodies and sparky, danceable drums has been slowed down to a snake-like pace – the result falling somewhere between Barry White and a 80s indie disco. It’s stunningly beautiful in parts (‘Loop the Loop’), thrusting in others (‘Bed of Nails’ could easily find its way onto student union dancefloors), and it may make you feel like a bit of a pervert for loving it.
Wild Beasts play Oran Mor, Glasgow, Fri 6 May.