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Fuck me. It has been an EXTRAORDINARY week for good albums. Some weeks there's barely any of real note then about 15 of the buggers shoulder barge their way into our collective critical face all at once. Like, that just ain't cricket, dude. It's buses actually. One of the last things I've been forced at gunpoint to squeeze some thoughts out about is this Extra Life CD on loAF. I read an interview ...

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Secular Works by Extra Life
2 reviews. Write a review for us »
9/10 Brian Staff review, 09 April 2009
Fuck me. It has been an EXTRAORDINARY week for good albums. Some weeks there's barely any of real note then about 15 of the buggers shoulder barge their way into our collective critical face all at once. Like, that just ain't cricket, dude. It's buses actually. One of the last things I've been forced at gunpoint to squeeze some thoughts out about is this Extra Life CD on loAF. I read an interview with them last night whilst demolishing two Chinese takeaways and watching yet another bloody dramatisation of the life, death & resurrection of. J. Christ ESQ. Interesting gaggle of cool geeks indeed! 'Secular Works' is a total head fuck. It comes out fighting for independence somewhere between Xiu Xiu & Tool, the vocal style is often of that swooping, staggered operatic theme with a distinctly medieval twist. The music on the first couple of tracks is built around a form of stop-start grinding math-core. These two entities dramatically thrash it out for dominance amongst some sinister atmospherics & beautifully tender chamber-esque moments which temper the quiet malevolence and alarming structure of the songs. 'I'll Burn' is a 10 minute pagan ballad in the middle and for all it's soothing vocal harmonies & tranquil guitar, you're slightly hunched in trepidation of some hammer of Thor style math metal onslaught suddenly smashing yr teeth out. Followed by 'The Refrain' which actually sounds like the singer out of McCarthy singing for cult Scot indie folksters Long Fin Killie! 'This Time' is spilling with more suspense, flickering violin, slo-core dynamics, the sketchiest of percussive implements and that yearning, remarkable voice scissoring eerily through the void. A fantastic and absorbing ride. I've made it sound harder to stomach than it is. The main chap is affiliated with Dirty Projectors who I'm afraid to admit, irritate the life from me but this forward thinking, brooding masterpiece is to be checked out at all costs! CD only.

10/10 thomas Customer review, 24th June 2009

une formidable claque, des moments intenses où l'on a parfois l'impression que Morrissey chante accompagné par Battles ! Un disque parfait : "blackmail blues", une grande entame avec un premier morceau tonitruant ; dans "i don't see it that way", Charlie Looker continue à nous surprendre avec sa façon de varier son chat ; puis "i burn" , grande ballade reposante et trepidante à la fois ; puis, "the refrain", le tube  entrainant (dansant ?) du disque; puis "this time", la pierre angulaire, le grand moment du disque. Dans la construction du morceau "This time", cela me rappelle les grandes epopées lyriques de Jack, avec le sens des ruptures en plus, et la générosité de doubler ou tripler les refrains les plus émotionnants . Dans ce morceau , le final est incroyable, Charlie looker nous assène d'un "i know what i know, but what i know won't change me, not this time". Sur l avant dernier morceau, on comprend que rien ne changera cette fois ci, que la tristesse est peut-etre irremediable, en tout cas qu'elle est installée pour un long moment. Avec "Beld white", le disque se conclut sur une ode a capella tres morrissienne, tres medievale egalement, comment pour nous dire calmement que ce disque (pas tres euphorique il faut le reconnaitre)est terminé et que la vie continue.
Album de l'année 2009.

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