Everybody’s talking about the new Bloc Party single. Is it a super-fantastic modernist triumph, or just a bit weird? We chat it out.
Caz: ‘Mercury’ – like a thunderbolt out of the blue – makes me immeasurably excited for the imminent release of the brand new Bloc Party album. Bands like Bloc Party make me very happy – it’s all about the rhythm. And yeah, the “let’s release our new album with a week’s notice” thing is really old now, but have you heard ‘Mercury’? It’s crazy. I can’t imagine what Intimacy will sound like… What say you?
Nat: Well, the brass sounds like it’s being wringed… through a vacuum. It’s cold as ice but Bloc Party have always tended towards the more detached side of thing. It’s super-intricate, isn’t it? The first BP I ever heard was ‘Tulips’, and Silent Alarm confused me after that. And then there was ‘Flux’. I want Intimacy to confuse me, to throw me – who wants predictable? Kele et al have certainly got ambition.
Caz: Exactly. Frenetic confusion, and being kept on one’s toes – it makes a nice change. Kele uses the extremes ofÂ his voice where other bands would use a keyboard or lead guitar line; Damon Albarn is one notable fan of this technique and, latterly, Nathan Followill on this year’s ‘Charmer’ by Kings Of Leon. Weird noises are ace – but not when they are someone’s actual voice, a la James Blunt.
Nat: Yeah, didn’t see that one coming with Kings of Leon really. I got put off by ‘On Call’ though – it was a complete departure but it just seemed to stay in one place and try and hone itself in. The public do love a weird voice, don’t they? But only when it’s shoved through a standardisation processs. Guess that’s why Will Young won Pop Idol. And why Amy Winehouse became an alcoholic?
Caz: Morrissey reigns supreme. Somehow, it always comes back to him – but what about the TeletubbiesÂ cameoing on TheÂ Verve’s comeback single…? That’s another story entirely.