Friday 16 October 2020

Wicketkeeper - Shonk

Archers of Loaf were peddling a single on Record Store Day this year. Good stuff, but £15 for one new original song was too rich for my blood. Your entertainment pound gets much more value for money from Wicketkeeper’s album, Shonk, which trades in similarly gritty and tense noise.

Perhaps most obviously,Wicketkeeper’s kindred spirits are Built To Spill. That early 90s underground sound that wasn’t grunge, but knew where it was coming from, like Edsel Auctioneer and first album Teenage Fanclub in the UK. Spin’s screaming guitars are a definite nod to Dinosaur Jr, and the guitar avalanche and sledgehammer bass of The Side come, brilliantly, from Husker Du’s copybook.

Sure, Shonk isn’t overly adventurous, but their controlled chaos is dynamic, consistently forceful and rhythmically interesting enough to file under ‘excellent’ and ‘catch this band live as soon as the pandemic madness ends’.