Kill Kill Kill (Songs About Nothing) by Singapore SlingRelease date: February 2, 2017
Label: Fuzz Club
Icelandic band Singapore Sling may not win any awards for intelligent song titles any time soon, but aside from the almost throwaway (and seemingly dumb) attempts such as ‘Shake Shake Shake’ or ‘Scum Scum Scum’ lies a band who have managed to tap into that mysterious factor that makes rock and roll so much fun.
Now on their ninth album with Kill Kill Kill (Songs About Nothing), they have honed their bleak, motorik sound into a perverse, fucked up dystopia bringing to mind XTRMNTR era Primal Scream with the attitude of MC5. In essence a garage band, the electronic krautrock throbs in monotonous style, whilst retaining that fresh blast of youth that defines any hungry band.
Whilst the aforementioned song titles defy any means of telling what the songs may be about, it is during moments when the drab voice of Henrick Bjornsson repeats, almost mantra-like, the words “you are scum, you must die” that you start to feel the sinister humour behind all this. It’s that age old adage of appearing dangerous, except Singapore Sling achieve the dreaded honour of being the band you would least likely want to bump into, whilst also being that cool older brother you want to be.
Dark lyrics aside, the music evolves continuously from throbbing beat to an orgiastic burst of melodic patterns, often interspersed with what sounds suspiciously like horns. The deep production keeps everything on one level, away from the dance floor and although this is in no way cold-wave, does share some similarities.
Best are the throwaway harmonies such as on ‘Fuck Everything’ which manage to sound like the most lackadaisical thing ever, yet utterly beguiling. Singapore Sling really sound like they are doing this for your listening pleasure but they will not derive any enjoyment from it. It just happens to be one of the most exciting and vital pieces of music you will have heard for a while.
Things reach a true intensity during ‘Sonic Haus’, sounding by for all the world, like a bastardised Stooges intent on destroying all your hopes and dreams. This thrilling bleakness is soon replaced though, by the amusing upbeat ‘Kill Kill Kill’ which follows the drilled power of ‘Surrounded By Cunts’. All black shades and droll pouts, it’s a moment of bubblegum pop turned completely on its head.
Whilst the roots of the music are plain to see, the pure vitality that races through this album makes it one of unexpected intensity and joy. Ripples of excitement reach out to you from behind their dystopian vision and whilst they may actually not take themselves all that seriously, they do a fine job of scaring you in the process. Never has chanting “Kill Kill Kill” been so invigorating and may we all hope for a world where we put aside real problems and sing the words to ‘Scum Scum Scum’ on the dance-floors of this planet. Essential listening.