By David Colburn
Some things take time, in fact, in the world of music, most things take time. Many albums require multiple listens before a valid consensus can ever begin to be formed. Other albums have a special quality that is much less common; other albums put their best note forward, never look back, and march on a sugar-addled energy that leaves pompousness miles behind. This is the Second Album By a Band Called Adebisi Shank.
Many words, many comparisons, and many sensations spark, blossom and zealously spring to mind when describing Adebisi Shank’s sound. The most fitting term for the album is three simple letters: fun. From start to finish, the listener will be engulfed in a frantic world of toe-tapping beats, quirky keyboards and absolutely relentless guitars. Second thoughts are not necessary, simply enjoy every bit of sonic bliss as it blends like splatters of paint on a Jackson Pollock canvas.
One can hear elements of Battles, Lightning Bolt, and early Boredoms scattered throughout the album. The noise, math, and post-rock influences are indeed strong from beginning to end. In fact, some excerpts play like the most monumental compositions of Godspeed You! Black Emperor or Mogwai, filtered through some sunny instant espresso maker. The raw power and emotion of such groups is still present in a shiny, addictive, and tightly bundled portable package.
Power and emotion flow effortlessly through the speakers. One almost gets the impression that the band recorded the entire work on a late-night caffeine binge, and wisely let fate sort the greatness from the flaws. Taste a sample the retro keyboard worship of “International Dreambeat”, the almost-apocalyptic sonic attack of “Europa”, or the bouncy, see-saw-like rhythm of “Century Century” without becoming instantly engaged. If such a task is not impossible, it is definitely not for the weak!
There is a symbolic quality to the album’s ultimate coda; as everything breaks down and falls apart, one realizes that the zany aural joy and fun cannot last forever. This is the Second Album By a Band Called Adebisi Shank, enjoy it wholeheartedly.