Frontman for New York's once prime chord sequencers The Strokes, Julian Casablancas is also a solo artist in his own right, having released his debut record 'Phrazes of the Young' in 2009. This follow-up gives birth to a new backing group, The Voidz, comprised of guitarists Jeramy Gritter and Amir Yaghmai, keyboardist Jeff Kite and bassist Jake Bercovici. So basically, Casablancas has just started a new band -- 'Tyranny' is the result, a broadly political rock record aimed at whoever's at the top of the mean old capitalist system.
Vinyl Double LP £19.99 CLT0171
2LP on Cult Records.
- Includes download code
Limited Poster £16.99 CLT017L
Limited edition lighter sleeve containing the 12-track album as high quality MP3s on a built in USB flash drive. Features custom Julian Casablancas + The Voidz artwork.
- Limited edition
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- Tyranny by Julian Casablancas + The Voidz
The Strokes leader has chosen an unusual format to release his new album on. There are two formats, one is CD (fair enough) the other is cigarette lighter. Therefore as the CD is out of stock, I’m having to write a short bit about the actual sound of the album by listening to an internet clip.
I’d heard rumours that this album was a ‘glorious’ failure and contained ‘too many ideas’. The latter is something you couldn’t accuse the Strokes of in recent years. Certainly opener ‘Take Me in Your Army’ is pretty interesting. It has a muddy muffled sound and is based around a crunchy Young Marble Giants style drum machine. Casablancas voice is way different from his Strokes croon with some other worldly falsetto. If only the Strokes could release tracks of this quality - people might still take them seriously. ‘Crunch Punch’ premiers a kind of Devo/B52’s sound with a shouty nu-metaly chorus which sounds a lot more like Casablancas which is actually bad thing in this context. During the pummelling raucous ‘Mutually Assured Destruction’, I’m starting to worry that the first track was a red herring and that the album is as much of a mess as anticipated.
‘Human Kindness’ reassures me slightly - a quite crazy track, somewhere between ELO and Thom Yorke, with a completely bonkers vocal effect on the chorus. Yet those nu-metal inclinations return on the chorus of ‘Where No Eagles Fly’ which sits somewhere in the sweet spot between Joy Division and Limp Bizkit. It’s a crazy, at times enjoyable album that seems to marry a kind of dark post punk sound with horrible metal with a weird futurist type ethic. There are loads of tracks and the album goes on forever so you are bound to find something you like amidst the chaos.Good to see he’s keeping himself busy.
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