Monday, November 29, 2010
Review :: Psychotronic Wiretap :: Gang of Four
A band is only allowed one come-back album. I think that's a fair assertion... something everyone can agree on. Anything beyond that is no longer the valiant effort of the "band" - that being a solidified group of dedicated musicians - but really the privilege of a songwriter holding onto a name. Fortunately for Gang of Four, singer Jon King and guitarist Andy Gill have always been the clear core, and the torch is theirs to carry. In advance of their upcoming record, Content (due Jan. 25 through Yep Roc), the Gang (can I even say that?) have offered up a free EP featuring a re-recorded take of "Glass," from their agreed-upon classic debut Entertainment, along with two additional non-album tracks.
The necessity of a 3-song EP made up of one re-recording, one rehearsal demo, and one dance remix is entirely arguable. But it's free, so no harm there. Maybe I'm too classicist, but reviving a highlight from a landmark album for no particularly good reason (the original was "too busy" and "old-fashioned," according to Gill) seems gimmicky, especially 30 years later (!!) However, it's possible that revisiting that material in the studio primed the engine for the sessions that make up Content. High-fidelity aside, that could bode well for their proto-dance-punk perfection.
Download it for yourself here, and catch them at DC's 9:30 Club on February 9.
Gang of Four :: Glass (re-recorded)