- Meltdown (Infectious)
think my head is gonna explode muses Tim Wheeler on the introductory
eponymous track here, and so it would seem, given the ultra heavy transposition
from Ashs last summer laden long player 'Free All Angels'.
Next comes the equally ballsy and infectious grower that is 'Orpheus'
that should be blasting out from all car stereos throughout the summer.
Make no mistake this is an album that demands to be played LOUD!
'Evil Eye' is perhaps a hint that there is still a part
of the new Ash that evolved from the belly of Meltdown's predecessor,
mixing as it does fantastic deep rooted melodies with outright power rock.
'Clones' is the band at their pumped up best, and, as
Tim himself recently said Rick has turned into a drumming monster
and this is mightily evident on this ultra heavy track that is still ultimately
pop perfection, and one of the standout tracks.
Most likely single to be released next is 'Starcrossed',
on which Wheeler comes over all Bobby Gillespie circa 'Screamadelica'
to tremendous effect. This really is music to get a suntan to! 'Out
of the Blue' begins in a similar fashion to a track from their
former long player ('Nicole') but continues in the same vain as the rest
of this record one of utmost urgency and admirable energy.
The amount of strings added to the bands already extremely impressive
bow increases still further with the rather Japan like verses of 'Renegade
Cavalcade' but still remains unmistakeably Ash, to their credit.
Honestly, it frightens me that a band can actually BE this good and still
reach the charts, but I for one am eternally grateful that they do! 'Detonator'
begins just as you would hope like a bomb waiting to explode, and
the longer it ticks on, the more excited you become by the thought of
the inevitable eruption. I think thats probably down to Ricks
crafty utilisation of his cowbell, which adds a kind of authenticity to
'On a Wave' is a tad like an early REM
track, and the vocals arent a million miles away from Stipe either.
Still utterly superb, and this is followed by the ridiculously contagious
'Wont Be Saved' arguably the albums
most feelgood tune and quite possibly another single for the future. Then
again, Ash could release ANY of these eleven rockets and guarantee themselves
a place in the Top 20.
This phenomenal work of art (for it would be unfair of me to keep calling
it just an album) finishes with what is, at present anyway,
this writers favourite track the rather dirty sounding 'Vampire
Love', complete with driving rhythm, screaming guitars and a
solo that just stops short of being labelled self indulgent!
In summary, I was expecting the ever reliable four piece to release another
brilliant album. What I DIDNT expect, and which usurped me in rather
fine style, was the fact that theyve released a record at least
four times as good as that!
Absolutely magnificent. 10/10