Thursday, 25 April 2013

Introducing: The November Five - If You're Satisfied You Are Dead

"If You’re Satisfied You Are Dead" is not just the debut album from The November Five, it’s a passionate and furious riposte to the spurious notion that we should "Keep Calm and Carry On". In an age where the good are turned bad and the blameless are demonised, these are anthems for the austerity that tackle head-on the desperate and savage times we find ourselves in. Inspired as much by the sound of your neighbours arguing at 3 o'clock in the morning, the wailing of sirens and the crashing of doors in a dawn raid as they are by their musical heroes, The November Five create a rock'n'roll noise that's made when MENSA collides headlong into ASBO. The November Five are as mad as hell and are asking the right questions. And they want you to get mad, too. Because if you’re satisfied…well, we all know the answer to that one...

The November Five's first two singles, "Closure" and "Awake in a Daze", received international radio support from stations as varied as BBC 6 Music, Xfm, Radio 1, LA’s KROQ and others across Europe and South America. "If You’re Satisfied You Are Dead" delivers on their promise. The album was co-produced by The November Five and Brian O’Shaughnessy whose previous production credits include Go-Kart Mozart, Primal Scream and My Bloody Valentine and it has been praised by Shindig magazine, The Quietus and Vive Le Rock amongst others.  For a debut, it's a thoroughly satisfactory album, brilliantly constructed from start to finish. The songs are lean with a great use of space and atmosphere, allowing singer Joe Cribbins' voice to shine. There's some mightily impressive guitar work too, sometimes simple yet always effective, there's no unnecessary excess. The band clearly understand dynamics and know how to reign it in with a Post-Punk approach of, say Wire or Mission of Burma. The variety on offer is also impressive, if you were to pick a track at random it would probably not be representative of the album as a whole, although the band do have a strong identity and sound. For example the first track "Here We Come" is a spacious atmospheric number that recalls early Echo & The Bunnymen, but then they can rock out like Radio Birdman. "Good To Be Alive" has Joe crooning like Iggy Pop on "Risky" over a slow jazzy drum beat whilst "Good Cop Bad Cop" reminds me of the highly underrated Radio 4 with it's call and response vocals over some great funky bass and drums. "Control" is a powerful number with a nice Pixies chord change and the album ends on the mellow "Reach Out" with a nice synth undercurrent and some lovely chiming guitar work. It's a great finish to an excellent album.

Joe Cribbin – Vox and Bass
Chris Maciejewski – Guitars and Keyboards
Julian Marszalek – Guitars and Vox
George Phillips – Drums and Percussion

You can check out more information on The November Five at their official Facebook. We also played a track from the album in Episode 7 of Retrosonic Podcast, go on, have a listen...

With thanks to Julian Marszalek.

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