Tuesday, 4 February 2014

Dora Maar

Franz Ferdinand reinvented Josef K’s stuttering post-punk to "make records that girls can dance to”; Dora Maar have taken Josef K’s template and made music that you can read Penguin Classics to.

Actually, that’s what Josef K did originally: nervy, awkward and smart, the electric frenzy of Wire in Velvet Underground’s demi-monde. And that’s what Dora Maar do, too.

At their best on Jessica Says (yeah, they used the VU-song-name-generator for that one) they’re terrific. They’re at their weakest when they fail to transcend their influences - really, guys, Heaven Knows I'm Miserable Now is just too famous to appropriate, even when mixed with Josef K's Heaven Sent, on Anna Karina, 1965 - but this 6-track tape is a very impressive debut.

If they can find a way, like both Pulp and Edwyn Collins eventually did, to match the Chic Organization’s gravitation with punk’s vitality then they’ll light up the charts. Jessica Says suggests they could. Your call, Dora Maar.

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