Instalment number two of a series that could/should run and run, Noisestar’s latest split 12” showcases the talents of Charlottefield and Ship’s A Going Down, bands that this writer for one has praised repeatedly in past reviews. Rightly so too, as the former are possibly the most exciting live band in Britain right now – based on their recent RoTa performance at least – and the latter possess an energy that’s rarely bettered by the bands they (more often than not) play second fiddle to – the single exception being a remarkable show featuring both Youthmovie Soundtrack Strategies and Bloc Party above them. But, anyway…
To this split, then: Ships occupy the Session #3 slot, ‘side A’ I suppose of this fancy red vinyl. They contribute four tracks that merge into a single, nine-minute post-punk-cum-post-rock epic, spiralling this way and then that but always retaining focus. The band's fondness for experimentation - check the spoken-word aspect of the opening few minutes - ensures that the listener is forever kept guessing as to the record's eventual destination – will we emerge into the sunlit and fertile post-rock valley, or the dirty, gritty punk-rock backstreets? Still, regardless of the direction the band take in the future, these tracks serve as a timely reminder of exactly why hairs stood on end when they released their May She Marry A Ghost And Bear Him A Kitten EP. Good stuff.
Charlottefield’s ‘No Hands’ is an eight-minute romp through more traditional foot-to-the-floor, punka-rocka hammerings, propelled by the finest drummer this side of the afterlife. It lacks the immediacy of the band’s more succinct material (check their Fat Cat 7”), but is a decent curtain raiser for the outfit’s forthcoming album on Jonson Family. About bloody time, too – with luck and a following wind Charlottefield will romp to the top of the 2005 rock honours list. Get this and say you were there first.
7Mike Diver's Score