Wednesday, May 6th, 2009

Future of the Left – The Hope That House Built

The one on the left doesn’t have hair like early-period Joseph Gordon-Levitt anymore, btw…


David Raposa: If I actually wanted to hear The Ex rewrite a Supertramp song, I’d seriously question whether I really liked music.

W.B. Swygart: The sound of zombies jerking out of graves, the way the last minute winds up sounding like methane rising; the satisfaction I derive from this song is weird, it corkscrews into the less reasonable parts of me, sets my smile off-axis, has my eye muscles going so hard I can’t focus on fuck all, and that all feels absolutely right. The stomp, the shag, the sulk of it goes battering about in my brain all day and it is tremendous.

Michaelangelo Matos: Who is this pompous twat?

Dave Moore: Essentially Fall Out Boy quirky carnival bark stripped of its molasses, the new post-Mclusky single has about zero in it that makes me want to geek out around my dorm room c. 2003, which makes its usefulness limited. I don’t want to consider for too long whether the song ultimately scans as kooky in-character nihilism (“ja, vee believe in nothsing“) or an annoyingly mistimed kooky Bush-era pushback — or whether I mind more if the joke’s on hope (sigh) or on house (what?).

Briony Edwards: Now, this band features a collection of musicians from fairly alright-ish previous acts, so what the hell is this? The dirgy guitars of the intro give hope that this could be good – only for that to be quickly dashed as soon as the vocals kick in. Trite lyrics about lefty politics which were probably written by their record company, sung over THE SAME BLOODY CHORD THE WHOLE WAY THROUGH. For 03:41 minutes? Are you kidding me?!

Martin Skidmore: This reminds me of Chumbawumba, which can hardly be a good thing. You know they want their audiences to be punching the air and yelling along and, for all I know, this might happen, but I won’t be there.

Ian Mathers: The rich, the religious, the stupid, the idealistic, the self-righteous — to Andy Falkous, they’re all heads of the same grotesque hydra that makes being a human being such a pain in the ass. And while unfortunately “The Hope That House Built” isn’t as viscerally immediate as the best of Mclusky, it continues Future of the Left’s streak of thorny, interestingly structured singles that are worth it for the sheer contempt for everyone that rises from it like smoke. Only Falkous can make “in the end, everybody wins” sound so sneeringly hateful, and thank goodness he can.

Rodney J. Greene: The repetitious guitar crunch is satisfying for the first minute or so, but the singer needs to go join a choir already.

Hillary Brown: I haven’t heard a sneer so close to Jello Biafra’s in quite a while, but the rest of this song lacks the nimble guitar-work and frantic pace of most of the Dead Kennedys’ stuff. Instead, it’s kind of prog-chug, but with some interest.

Martin Kavka: The crispness and authenticity of this track is of a high enough class that means that cultural-studies students — and not just the Welsh ones — will be writing papers on this band in a matter of months. So if this is band is the heir to the Clash, why not give it a 10? Because the song doesn’t feel embedded in the current historical moment. Can anyone write music about the hopelessness of social movements in the Age of Obama without appearing to be merely posturing, and thereby shitting on the legacy of the politically engaged music of yesteryear?

Jordan Sargent: Things I didn’t know I wanted in my life: a Celtic Queens of the Stone Age cover band.

8 Responses to “Future of the Left – The Hope That House Built”

  1. Swygart and Mathers’ blurbs are so good I wish they were describing a song that didn’t sound like a punked-up Monty Python tune without the jokes.

  2. But that’s why it’s great!

  3. Okay, lol @ Matos and I giving the last 5 songs identical scores.

  4. Or very nearly. I’ll blame my sleepiness.

  5. And that’s 5 of the past 6. I am tired.

  6. I played this song about four times on repeat, and at least two residents of my household were shouting at me to “turn that the fuck off!” after the second go. Not a hit in South East London.

  7. For the record, Mclusky fans, the album sounds nothing like this song, and very much does make me want to geek around my dorm room c. 2003. Song even sounds better in context, though I still don’t really like it as a single.

  8. … I still don’t really like it as a single.

    That’s what really gets me about this song — it isn’t in line w/ what the group’s known for, nor is it offbeat enough to throw fans & rubberneckers for a loop. Also, it is beyond godawful and I 2nd Jonathan’s comment WRT WTF you 7-uppers were actually listening to.