Fucked Up is a band whose art-damaged take on hardcore is something I've historically admired more than I loved. THE CHEMISTRY OF COMMON LIFE is a monster of an album, but also one that I found too impenetrably heavy to fully engage with. I thought that seeing them live would help unlock the band for me, as it often does; but despite putting on an energetic and intense show at Matador @ 21, and despite having a lovely elevator ride with lead singer Damian (who, despite wandering around stage in an intense scary manner, was easily the most friendly musician I met that weekend), they still didn't click for me.
All of this, I suspect, is about to change for me, and probably a lot of other people, with their new album DAVID COMES TO LIFE. I'm basing this entirely on the first single, "The Other Shoe", which I downloaded mostly for completeness, and then listened to seven times in a row. It's ludicrously addictive, and while I've yet to work out whether it's a quantum leap forward for the band or just me finally clicking with their sound, I'm too busy enjoying it over and over to care. I'm hearing a bit more of the melodicism of a band like ... And You Will Know Us By The Trail Of Dead, loving the dueling male/female vocals, and finding the Stereolab-esque repetitive riffs to be completely hypnotic. (The last may seem a strange comparison, admittedly, but if you imagine the opening riff played on a Farfisa, it suddenly becomes stunningly plausible.)
But don't trust me; have a listen for yourself.
You can download the MP3 here. It's the first of four "digital singles" from the forthcoming album, and I'm eagerly awaiting the next three. It's been a great year for music, but as of now this single, at very least, tops the pile for me.