I’m booking some dates for the English band ACTION BEAT.
They’re available during all week-ends in July and August.

Please read here under a review of their latest cd ‘Beatings’ and also
visit their Myspace

Action beat open their record, ‘beatings’ with a song named ‘car crash
Halloween disco’ that sounds like it was recorded by Sonic Youth during
their ‘confusion is sex days’ and which is, therefore, thoroughly awesome.
A vast, bleeding arms of tangled guitars, frenzied drum beats and howling
feedback it is the sort of music you put on at a party if you want to be
fairly sure of clearing away that one guest who always examines your
collection of alt-rock albums carefully and then pensively asks you if you
have any Robbie Williams. After 2 minutes of this disarming noise abuse I
can guarantee that they’ll be gone – but as with Sonic Youth, this is the
sort of album that makes you want to stay the course, if only to find out
what they’re going to do next.

In the case of Action beat, the next course of action is to unleash a
track that recalls ‘brother James’ (only minus vocals) and which sees the
drummer apparently having some sort of lucky fit that still allows him to
molest the drum kit even if he isn’t strictly in charge of his limbs any
more. Meanwhile the guitars are faster than a speeding bullet and the bass
rumbles away in the background making everything shake slightly. Four
minutes in and it’s time for song number three ‘danger beat’ which makes
up for what it lacks in tune, subtlety and structure with an earnest
desire to burst ear-drums that you can only admire (particularly if you
loved the noise rock of bands such as SY and Urusai Yatsura). ‘Krang’
dispels any notions that these noisy buggers may attempt a ballad with a
vicious stop/start riff and corrosive drums that crash through yr skull
like a ton of bricks dropped from a great height.

So far, so excellent. ‘straight’ (which is anything but) relies on an
oddly timed, jarring riff that makes you feel ever so slightly sea-sick
before ‘Don0)))vito’ comes on like a Pavement b-side, all interlocking
guitars and indie-tunefulness. ‘Bergen to Blethcley’ kind of approaches a
more subtle dynamic (subtle in blasting the padlock off a door with a
shotgun rather than a pound of C4) with the riffs making marginally more
sense and a suspicion that the guitars are being played with picks rather
than a screwdriver. Happily this feeling of security doesn’t last long
with the beautifully titled ‘shit yrself’ offering up a 3 minute summation
of Mogwai’s ‘like Herod’ quiet/loud dynamic. ‘Daddy why?’ could possibly
be Iggy Pop’s ferocious take on punk filtered through the warped minds of
these damaged individuals – or that could just be my own damaged brain
attempting to make sense of it all and ‘chug’ is a distant cover of
Nirvana’s ‘endless nameless’.

…and that’s Action Beat. They’re not pretty, they probably are clever and
their ex-members’ list looks like a telephone directory (and in all
probability is the directory of a centrally located tinnitus clinic), al
lof which means that they are completely and utterly awesome and should be
on the Christmas list of any naughty boy or girl who misses the wild
experimentation of the casualties of ‘the year that punk broke’.
Admittedly ‘beatings’ may leave you feeling like you’ve taken one, but if
your thing is warped, exceptionally heavy guitar mangling and SonicAbuse
(and if it isn’t, why exactly are you here?) then Action Beat will be
right down your dimly lit, urine soaked ally.

I hope to hear from you asap.


Alain Bolle


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