i hate the sound of guitars

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quick take : Gang of Four : Content

15 Feb 2011 · 1 Comment

The groupthink consensus on Content seems to be something like “not bad, but not as good as Entertainment!*” This seems fundamentally unfair; I think a better question is, “is it as good as Mall** or Shrinkwrapped***?” Content leaves Mall cringing in the gutter, and while Shrinkwrapped had some lovely unruly moments from guitarist Andy Gill, he has many more on Content: harsh, mid-rangey, frankly kind of tuneless, or, in other words, same as he ever was. Vocalist Jon King, meanwhile, sounds pretty much like he always did. When he sings about taking pictures with his phone it actually strikes me as anachronistic; I think that’s a success indicator.

For those keeping score: original bassist Dave Allen and drummer Hugo Burnham were originally onboard for the post-millennial reunion, but wandered off prior to recording the new album; ringers Thomas McNeice and Mark Heaney provide the rhythm section here. And the limited edition of Content, in a shiny, doodad-crammed metal box, is a collector geek’s dream.

* The ground-breaking 1979 debut
** The tepid, murky 1991 reunion album
*** The much better 1995 reunion album

Tags: 2011 · g · post-punk · quick take · yep roc

1 response so far ↓

  • 1 Paula // Feb 15, 2011 at 06:44

    Content leaves Mall cringing in the gutter

    Agreed!

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