The Sandals of Majesty
Henry’s Cellar Bar, Edinburgh, Tue 15 Nov
The name is misleading. Rather than some mellowed out, magic-carpet-riding, back-packer-eyed mystics as may be implied, this bi-aural, bi-lingual, buy-now-while-stocks-last quartet are up-tight, in-tense and simmering with enough evil stares you sense they might give you a semiotics lecture any minute. With a frontman who’s a dead ringer for original PiL guitarist Keith Levene sneering like a corrupted Little Lord Fauntleroy throwing Howard Devoto shapes, and at least two veterans of 1990s agit-punx Badgewearer in the ranks, this Edinburgh/Marseille/Droitwich (the most important brine and salt town in England) ensemble fly like antsy, dancey quicksilver.
Driven by a tautly plucked bass sound not heard since John Peel circa (but not C) ‘86, the barricades are there for the taking, whatever it is they’re against. Think McCarthy, The Cravats and The Prefects. Think Biting Tongues before the new-generation turned post-punk-funk-junk into a fashion statement. Think of a time when anger, art and intelligence weren’t mutually exclusive. Above all, think anything you like. Like the man said, ‘We Are the People.’ Indeed we are. (Neil Cooper)