Monkey Swallows the Universe are an acoustic five-piece band from Sheffield. This month they will mainly be releasing a free download single, available through theespc.com, featuring two songs from their February-due album. I, meanwhile, will mainly be encouraging you to go and take advantage of the fact that no money is needed to sample their understated brilliance.
The first, noisier track, Jimmy Down the Well, is a slightly disturbing little ditty about saving someone’s life and then demanding their eternal allegiance in repayment, and manages the impressive feat of adding an entirely new dimension of trauma to the near-death experience. A tad disturbing, then, but also incredibly good fun dance-along acoustic-beats which boasts a satisfying number of handclaps. On Sheffield Shanty the band prove themselves equally capable of haunting, tear-prickling acoustic beauty, and they also use a glockenspiel. Glockenspiel! Hurrah! Any band who use glockenspiels, who’re capable of demonstrating such tunefully twisted humour and who claim to put the ‘cor’ back in recorder are, methinx, more than worthy of any- and everyone’s respect and attention.