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Polaroids Of Androids

Record Reviews

7.2

Perfect Pussy
Say Yes To Love

Holy Fuck, Fuck Buttons, The Half Fucks, Fucked Up, The Fuck Boys, The Cuntz, The Fucks, AIDS Wolf, Bucket Of Cancer. Ah, these kooky kids and their attention-seeking naming strategies. The Kooks? Nope. But Perfect Pussy? You probably won't list them when your parents prose the question of "what have you been listening to lately?" at the evening dinner table. A defiant move from those involved (Perfect Pussy, not your parents) and the creation of a defined limitation.

So, is this all merely a safe-guard? "We never became The Next Nirvana because those suit-wearing Viacom execs over at MTV blushed every time they had to say our name". Is Kurt still held as the benchmark of success, with creative integrity maintained? Does MTV still exist? Questions?

Regardless of the serves returned to those ace-destined questions, the moniker 'Perfect Pussy' remains a completely inoffensive term in itself, referring to either the rare pleasure of encountering a well-behaved feline or a faultless instance of female genitalia. But it's still a testing name. Testing it's intended audience, who are probably (like myself) not completely confident when stating "have you heard that new Perfect Pussy record?". It's the most simplistic form of rebellion, but a fitting label, nonetheless.

Because Perfect Pussy are a band obsessed with the edges, tip-toeing right on the border-line of what our modern music-consuming world deems respectable, acceptable and tolerable. Like that screeching slice of pain on album opener, Driver, which squeezes through the small gaps of taming comfort supplied by the familiar up-tempo power-pop-punk riff, diluted just enough from it's resolved state of annoyance. A diffusing tactic repeated again on the next three tracks — Bells, Big Stars and Work — right up to the point where you're ready to label the whole thing merely a solitary trick reformed into slightly varying formats. Then along comes the mid-record settler, Interference Fits, showcasing the band's clear ability to craft mood and space and other suitable hashtags.

Interference Fits is the record's salvation. Essentially a reformed version of a modern pop structure, merging an escapist-obsessed fist-pumping hook, mildly warped re-interpretation of a well-worn guitar lead and perfectly restrained expressions of emotion. The subtle guiding hand gives it a sense of control, without abstracting any of the filthy mish-mashed elements that it's constructed from.

Suitably, Interference Fits is positioned as a divisional midpoint on the eight-track, 23-minute release. While the aforementioned opening half pursues a consistent line of fast-paced, hellfire-fueled punk rock, the proceeding finale occupies a far more experimental space. The closing duel of Advance Upon The Real and VII is especially testing, with the two tracks melted together by a drawn-out morphing process, migrating from ambient tape hiss to brain-stabbing distortion.

It's hard to not view Say Yes To Love as an album that purposefully pursues a path of repulsion, a band leveraging their initial level of attention to stretch the limitations of what people will withstand as tolerable output. Whilst there's an admirable sense of punk brashness throughout, this is a record that challenges more than it excites. Sure, that's most likely the whole point of the exercise in question, but this overbearing sense of confrontation ultimately weakens the record's ability to be anything more than an interesting, refreshing and frenzied attack on our expectations.

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