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Future Of The Left “How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident”
Welsh noise rockers Future Of The Left rose from the ashes of influential noise rock/post-hardcore band Mclusky in 2005. Mclusky was an incredible and often overlooked band that formed in the mid-90s, releasing three strange albums that fused vulgar lyricism, noisy guitars, and a cool new twist on post-hardcore, not unlike Big Black, who were probably one of the group’s biggest influences. Mclusky called it quits in 2005 due to internal conflicts, leaving vocalist/guitarist Andrew “Falco” Falkous and drummer Jack Egglestone to their own devices, which resulted in the original lineup of Future Of The Left. The four-piece made music not unlike the music of Mclusky and can even be seen as a direct continuation of the band’s musical evolution, with Falco’s lyrics getting much more obviously satirical and the band’s sound being toned down a tad. Eight years later, the group has just released their fourth album “How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident” which turns the sarcasm up a notch.
On “How To Stop Your Brain,” Falco is not shielding his distaste with pop culture in any way shape or form. He seems at his most disdainful on the poetic song “Singing of the Bonesaws,” which is almost all spoken word on top of a pretty groovy backing track. He brings up somewhat outdated topics like Kim Kardashian, MTV, and criticisms of “There Will Be Blood.” While it doesn’t get much more explicit than that, Falco doesn’t get much less verbose with his lyrical content. Future Of The Left don’t try to be as instrumentally complex as Mclusky were, but they’re definitely much more critical. With song titles like “I Don’t Know What You Ketamine (But I Think I Love You)” and “How To Spot A Record Company” it’s hard to miss the biting edginess that’s all over this record. But don’t assume that Falco is immature with his assertions like NOFX tend to be (perhaps purposefully), because he’s a really smart dude, it seems. He doesn’t shove his views down anyone’s throat, he’s just singing about what he cares about.
Future Of The Left’s lyrics can also be sad in their honesty, too. One lyric that sticks out is when he says that he is “running to the disabled bathroom topping off a 12-hour drinking spree” on the song “French Lessons.” Falco has always been known for his blunt lyricism which is definitely deserved, but he (and the members of the bands he’s in) should also be noted for the instrumental skill. The group never really delves into math rock territory, but they always seem on the verge as the increase the rate of their songs and change up the structure halfway through a song. “How To Stop Your Brain In An Accident” is catchy, full of left-turns, and a shining moment in the band’s career.
I’m always amazed at Falco’s ability to craft such incredibly catchy songs. From Mclusky’s “Lightsabre Cocksucking Blues” all the way to the undeniable “How to Spot A Record Company” on this record, I am consistently impressed with anything this man is involved with. While Future Of The Left may not be as memorable or as important to people as Mclusky were, they’re certainly not worth ignoring. This band is great and they still make great music. There are a few weak moments on this record, but for the most part I’m enjoying what I’m hearing here. So if you enjoy satire that isn’t too ostentatious, you should listen to everything Mclusky and Future Of The Left have ever released. You won’t regret it.
SCORE – 8.6
FAVORITE TRACKS – Johnny Borrell Afterlife, Future Child Embarrassment Matrix, Singing of the Bonesaws, I Don’t Know What You Ketamine (But I Think I Love You), How to Spot a Record Company, Donny of the Decks, The Real Meaning of Christmas, Things to Say to Friendly Policemen, Why Aren’t I Going To Hell