Rough Trade Album of the Month September 2018 – Idles “Joy As An Act Of Resistance”

Sometimes the right album arrives at the wrong time. I fear that this may be one of those occasions.

The last month has been largely getting my head around an awful family illness. The blog has taken the backseat. It’s been replaced by hospital wards, errands, working remotely. Stress and angst have been the order of the day with a side order of the failing London housing market, dealing with people who clearly don’t give a damn about the impact of their behaviour when it comes to putting a roof over your head.

The only break has been the odd walk in the country to blow off the cobwebs and that has largely been soundtracked by some soothing autumnal ECM music. I feel like I’ve temporarily left anything remotely four to the floor behind. Whilst righteous indignation and anger is what I feel inside, I don’t want to listen to things that are going to feed those feelings. I’m needing a little balm at the moment.

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The second Idles album feels like a much better album that I can do justice to at the moment. It is is a fantastic commentary on Britain in 2018, cut from a similar cloth to Sleaford Mods and Shame.

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Try this from Never Fight A Man With A Perm:

You are a Topshop tyrant, Even your haircut’s violent
You look like you’re from Love Island

Or from Great:

Blighty wants his country back, Fifty-inch screen in his cul-de-sac
Wombic charm of the Union Jack, As he cries at the price of a bacon bap

I’ve bemoaned the lack of a reaction to austerity and Brexit previously. Idles pick up themes of nationality on Danny Nedelko (a member of Lungs, friends of the band), Joe Talbot sings about the tragic loss of his stillborn daughter on June and masculinity on Samaritans. It is personal. It is all done with muscular vigour and I would imagine it would translate brilliantly to a live environment. I’ve heard from a few people whose judgement I trust that they are incredible in concert, building up a real rapport with the crowd. It is an intelligent record, energetic and musical. It is passionate and laser-like in its focus on the issues of the day.

It is all just what we are looking for at the end of the personal, national and global omnishambles that 2018 has been.

Except I don’t want to listen to it. Not me. Not now. Maybe later.

Written by stue1967

After taking several readings, I'm surprised to find my mind's still fairly sound

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