Thursday, March 31, 2011

US English - Used Future EP2

Hear The Track Here

Aaah, US English! Not the mothertongue of this reviewer. Americans talk differently to wot I do (Ed: face it Gilmore, everybody talks differently to you, they are sane) For example, I say tam-ah'ahh and they say tomAto (but probably spell it potatoe). Dammit, they even have a different keyboard to they can throw in loads of $$$$$ when they talk, eventually - as it happens - emptying your wallet. This is, after all, the land of Apple, Microsoft and other land barons. US English, however in this particular context is a American duo, Brea and James McAnally and is the last review out of the bag this month from the Rebelriffs blog. I feel the hot, angry stares of quite a few American eyeballs right at this moment but let me point out that I lived there, married one of them, and my children are both American and English. See, I love 'em really...

Just not their business practices.

Used Future is the second (natch) of three separate EP's from this arty electronica pair and one thing Thou art That (track one) shows immediately what a strong vocalist James is, and what an oddball vocalist Brea is. Sounds like an unlikely combination but the warmth and vibrancy that comes from this track is pure magic. Back in the days of early English electro-pop I fondly imagined what could be done with the genre with a bit of muscle attached to it. I always heard electronica as being a dense, all enveloping sound with a lyric and vocal too match and very few of those early bands managed that. Depeche Mode and Soft Cell were probably the closest. Now US English don't sound like either of those bands but the ethos is certainly the same. What is What allows Brea to step centre stage and its immediate that she can also sing when put to it, and the blend of their voices is just sublime. In these two tracks alone, I hear so much different from the norm I almost - dare I say it? - excited.

Songs, check, ideas, check and by the bucketload, originality check now what else? All that talent would, of course, mean nothing if the rendering of it unto our earholes is not as up to the mark. Production, my bug eyed chums, is the name of the game and that is where US English really ace it. If this is 'home produced' then I am doubly impressed because he doesn't exhibit any of the usual flaws associated with the process. All four songs are beautifully performed, intricate and interesting, showcasing a ridiculously good songwriting team. Between the first two tracks and Lonely Internet and Future More Vivid, you will be TOTALLY spoilt for choice because each is as good as the other. Only one word for this; awesome. Forget the electronica thing; think drama, excitement and sounds of pure undiluted wonder. Try it, it will blow you on your smug ass...

MUST HAVE originality.

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