Top Disco-Punk rock glamsters, BUGEYE, venture beyond genres and generalisations to an alternative classic loaded with ready, steady bangers.
1) On and On, 2) Breakdown, 3) Shake and Bake, 4) Blue Fire,
5) When The Lights Go Out, 6) Sunday, Monday, 7) Electric,
8) Something’s About To Change, 9) Nightlife, 10) Don’t Stop
2019 Composed/Performed by Bugeye, Produced by Paul Tipler, Vinyl, CD, Digital via Reckless Yes. Artwork by 31% Wool
From the get-go, this is a 21st century pop music spectacular. Grace Healey (keys), Kerrie Smith (drums), Paula Snow (bass) and Angela Martin (guitar/vocals) confidently invite us into the heart of a (blooming) arts movement they’re an essential part of.
‘On and On’ builds from bleep-rave to crystal-voice to 1970s disco beats and 1980s 4AD riffs and fast as coming up on a 21c-pop rush, ‘Ready Steady Bang’ is in your system.
Having deservedly received comparisons to some of the most inventive stars, influential music activists, Bugeye, will go on to inspire future comparisons in their sparkly, DIY wake. No pink coding required.
“In early 2019, with the political atmosphere, climate change issues exploding and personal demons demanding their pound of flesh, we felt angry. The need for a creative output was stronger than ever so we decided to put pen to paper, and focus what time we had, on writing new material, which all came together in the space of about six months. Material that has a darkness to it, but wrapped up in upbeat disco beats and catchy fun tunes that demand you to dance. Our blend of disco punk.”
Since 2015, the revived Bugeye have been pushing audio boundaries (while the last few years have pushed humanity’s nerves). We need our entertainment to be high quality escapism. Key media have been impressed into amazing support, swelling a growing crowd of fans.
Musicality practicality that’s SO “Right now”. ‘Breakdown’ paces up and freaks out in all directions without missing a beat, that you could jump or march to, empathising anthemically.
Styles, tempos, layers, riffs, hooks and an uplifting and empowering attitude oozes in dynamic pulses from every song. This band need to be on your bucket list for when we can gig again. Get ready to shout, jump, chant, strut, shimmy (and THINK?).
Author Disclaimer. I may be missing the amount of grinning and daddy-dancing I follow this band for, but that doesn’t cloud the judgement of my ears. This is simultaneously credible and incredible.
‘Shake And Bake’ slides from early-Jam tones into Beatlesque Riot Girl energy with dramatic underlay. So many ideas here – big up the band and Paul Tipler. Having produced Elastica, Idlewild, LIINES and many more shaker makers, he’s part of NOW’s riffed renaissance during a surreal adversity with the most diversity. ‘Ready Steady Bang’ straddles myriad influences and inspirations to be fresh, original, essential and completely different.
Bugeye sound like they’ve mainlined a lot of music in their life while retaining their own sound. A couple of months ago, I bumped into Mr Tipler, at one of their gigs. No wonder he could barely contain himself!
This is one of the albums lighting a touch paper, with singles like ‘Blue Fire’ which sounds like a sexy catwalk of Grace Jones arriving at a party. The lead singing and BVs on these songs are aligned like cosmic happenings – with a 31% Wool gallery of art concepts.
“We knew what we wanted to write about from the very beginning. We wanted to write about life
as it happens. The drunken silliness of weekends, the boredom of work, the worry about what’s
happening to the world, our fuck-ups, our day dreams, addiction and our celebration of music
styles from the past.”
Bugeye have created an album which is defiantly hopeful. Unafraid of facing the darkness, it rejects the pull of inertia in an uncertain world.
‘When The Lights Go Out’ is gonna haunt me, post-lockdown, in the most positive way. It sounds like being unleashed. Several times, it’s been pointed out that such 21st century chart-worthy tunes and charisma would not have been out of place on 20th Century TV.
‘Sunday, Monday’ is deeply a beautiful earworm for all our lives, if there is such a thing as precision-pop then this hits the “I know a spot” spot. It’s funky – and relates to many people – in lilting melody.
Bugeye are the sound of punk’s rainbow. Shades of minor major guitar and keyboard jangles fused with biting/balming vocals contained by rythmic masterclasses in how to POP!
There are whisps of Girl Bros, Wendy & Lisa circa Prince’s band The Revolution, alongside bombastic Garbage confidence and the strum brood of The Breeders. These are ferocious, “main stage” SONGS.
‘Electric’ keeps the arena worthiness coming. 2020’s debut albums have fought their way through a decade of “austerity” and whatever this year is, just to exist.
As we lock down, these major league tunes race our pulses. Audiovisual touches you love about Mansun and Duran Duran are fused with art sensibility and politically stanced observeration while remaining energertically uplifting. Music for families to sing along to with roll-ons as mics and Nana on backing vocals. Come on, you LOVE Bugeye.
The ‘Funky Town’ harmonies of ‘Something’s About To Change’ recall a whispy cloud of Lipps Inc in a multi-mirror tuned space pop aural firework display. ‘Nightlife’, crash crushes Pixies goodness explosions from an innocently new wave epic. The bass lines remain deadly deliciously sparkled Talking Heads tints.
‘Don’t Stop’ – how one-band-indie-disco, Bugeye, wash chords that rise and fall with your mood as they wash under your skin. Empathy with our realities empowers these songs to live in our heads and soundtrack our unreal lives. Songs that will sing themselves to you without headphones.
Wait. How can that be over already?
No seriously, Bugeye, don’t stop! ‘Ready Steady Bang’ is A definitive, bona-fide 21st Century LP Of The Year.
I’m not gushing. Merely observing. Fight me. Bite me.
Available 10th July. CD, Digital, Cream Vinyl. Reckless Yes member’s get an exclusive pressing on Smoked Red vinyl.
TheZineUK Events Dept. Love Pirate at Rocklands Artbeat / RocklandsTV. PR stands for Punk Rebel. Mad Old Bat (Deluxe) or Vintage Rock Chick? You decide.