The Waxing Captors - Pleasure!
Owain Paciuszko 27/08/2010
Jack Rundell whose solo-project The Snicks on my Mulligan impressed me with its wonky charms back in February 2009 returns as the guitarist in this Suffolk five piece.
Despite the explosive rock polish this LP has compared to that EP there's a lot in common with the sound of this compared to Rundell's solo-work. Lead singer Luke Littleboy has an Americanized cartoon of a voice somewhere between Jeffrey Lewis and Lux Interior, and it's deployed to wonderful effect on the arch,sneer of opening track Bottle In My Hand which resembles Adam Green tackling surfer rock. Next tune Bringing The Beatles Back to Hamburg is a furiously silly punk rocker that - alongside Shrinking Telephone - almost shoves the band into parodic Electric Six territory, but fortunately, when these guys make a noise it's a pretty glorious pop-cacophony. Aptly The Waxing Captors started out as a punk band called The Lady in the Radiator.
Constant Sorrow goes all Billy Idol at its out-set before lurching off into hyperactive Steve Harley territory, these boys are drenched in late-seventies, early eighties nostalgia and wrangle it well, while you can hear echoes of the past this is a lively and energetic record that never trades in an impenterable hammering of sound for good tunes and fun choruses. As a full record though it's relentlessness is a tad repetitive and certain tracks such as Date with the Normal slump limply by the wayside.
Meanwhile there's a touch of Pinkerton-era Weezer to the skewed punk-pop of File Under Rock/Pop with its 'Ooo ooo ooo ooooaa' vocals and off-kilter structure. There's a gloriously lolloping instrumental aside in the midst of Golden Afternoon filled with high-tempo muzak percussion and sci-fi samples, it's like being trapped inside Willy Wonka's hoover. Elsewhere Jaywalkin' Out Your Heart attacks the senses with the bluster of a lapdance from a psychopath, synth-lines swirling, guitars performing compact riffs whilst Littleboy's lyrics splutter out of his mouth in a whirl. The 46 second title track is fine but not really crazy enough to make an impact in its momentary running time.
Sadly the records weakest moments come at its close, or maybe just after the assault on the senses at the start you're too punchdrunk to appreciate the more subtle charms of Real Time and whilst the opening of All For Me doesn't inspire much confidence, it eventually musters the kind of psychedelic-punk-rock energy that typified The Vines output on their sophomore record.
Final stumbles aside this is a big slab of fun, it's filled with vigour and musical smarts and it'd be an undoubted blast to catch this band live. They manage to bottle that lightning on record, which is a rarity, and though some tracks flitter by making little impact, the bulk are little marvels. One of the better records I've heard this year.