It’s Sunday morning (just about) and Chef’s waiting for his Moka Express to percolate listening to Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti. The album ‘Before Today’ starts off with a jaunty accelerating soundscape leading to the driving beat and summery chorus of ‘Bright Lit Blue Skies’. ‘L’Estat’ tells a sorrowful tale with psychedelic sounds and a gauche ‘cheer up’ that prompts galloping cascades of keys – then the sun drops for ‘Fright Night’ – driving disco-tinged beats and synthy voices – mixed with a blokey ‘knock knock knock on the door’ followed by the inevitable sound effect.
‘Round and Round’ na na na nas into a moody strut with overlapping voices, before building up to an anthemic ‘hold on’ repeat, then breaking down with ‘sentimental heartbreaking, everything is my fault’. Next, ‘Beverly Kills’ is falsetto fun accompanied by police sirens, and then there’s the heavy guitar of ‘Butthouse Blondies’ with an unsettling sinewy vocal, before the worky ‘Little Wig’ – all echoing piano and retro guitar.
‘Can’t Hear My Eyes’ is a true radio rock ballad with an 80s instrumental that demands a fug of dry ice – contrasting nicely with the hooky ‘Menopause Man’ – dark, hymnal and full of sexual politics. ‘Revolution’s a Lie’ closes – insistent at first then fading away – then all that’s left to admire is the run down artwork by Douglas Lee. A great album, Chef’s Kiss!