Sunday, 5 December 2010

Know Your Quarry

So anyone that's read this blog before will know that I have no fucking taste at all. My latest confession, for some reason, makes me feel worse than saying Lungs was one of the albums of 2009, my Police or Peter Gabriel obsessions, love of All Saints' 'Pure Shores', Avril Lavigne's 'Girlfriend' or rabid defence of Ash's entire back catalogue. 

Dramatic, no? So what could this transgression be? Believing Muse's cover of 'Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want' to be superior to the Smiths' version? The Pumpkins' cover of 'Transmission' to be better than the original? Wagner's X Factor rendition of 'Creep' to trump Radiohead? No, nothing that bad (though I do believe those first two to be true); just that I've been listening to 'Know Your Quarry' from the most recent Biffy Clyro album, Only Revolutions, rather too much. 

Don't get me wrong, I don't object to Biffy as a rule; I don't even necessarily object to the more 'pop' parts of their oeuvre. I'll hum along to 'Bubbles' or 'Folding Stars', though for me their best moment is the slide in when the heavy guitars drop in 'Now I'm Everyone' off Puzzle, or perhaps the dumb octave stabs that kick off that same record (I should add, that yes, I like their earlier albums too, but that GRRRR in 'Now I'm Everyone' just beats all comers, sorry). The thing is, 'Know Your Quarry' is very vacuous. The lyrics are shit, the little funk-glam stompy chorus section sounds like Franz Ferdinand, and the intro is just plain out of place. 

So why, even as I write this, am I looking forward to wandering next door, putting the CD in and chilling out to it? The only answer I can think of is simply this: pizzicato strings. Let's be honest, they are awesome. Without them, 'Orinoco Flow' would be crap, and, er, that's the only one I can think of right now. Ok, so I'm a little short on evidence, but that changes nothing. Go dig out that album, skip it to track eleven, stick out the first minute, ignore the lousy lyrics and be swept away. 

Just don't come crying to me when it gets under your skin.

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