Obsessive Compulsive…great new Manchester rock

June 5, 2010

Obsessive Compulsive

I don’t know if anyone saw that rant in the Guardian about Manchester living in the past by Fuc51 but day by day I’m hearing band after band that proves this rather elevated pub rant wrong.
The city is full of great new bands of all styles and if you actually bother to go out you get to see something quite special shaping up.
Obsessive Compulsive really break this perceived mould.
Manchester has an oddly lopsided history of rock.
When is say rock- I mean loud, feisty, high decibel, life affirming fierce music dressed in fuck you freak clothes- The high decibel, extrovertly dressed world of Kerrang and associated noisenik areas.
Everywhere you go in the city there are tribes of rock kids, emo kids, punk kids, noise freaks, long hairs and neo goths. There are countless bands and many rock nights across the city and the north off England. Rock is huge in Manchester, the arena will generally only sell out to rock bands whilst indie groups struggle to fill venues half the size. In the surrounding towns rock is the currency- the real folk music of these times.
So how come there is no big rock band from round here?
Arguably there has been a kinda rock core to the sea of indie that dominates the area. Joy Division are ostensibly a rock band, their influence is huge on major rock bands and key in the goth scene. Without Joy Division there would be a very different major league rock scene from the USA with the likes of the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Marilyn Manson documenting an influence from the band. The Buzzcocks are one of the key punk bands and there have been a handful of other noisier groups breaking free from the jangling soundtrack.
And apart from that?
Maybe it's because the indie bands get the leg up from a indie friendly media and the rock bands get ignored, maybe its because the rock bands are generally fans trying to emulate their huge American cousins, maybe it's because no one is looking here for noisy action. Maybe the rock youth are in awe to the American band juggernauts…it could be a combination of these factors. There have been some really good rock/metal/punk bands from up here but they can only get so far when there ostracised by the media and left off the transatlantic gravy train.
Well that could be about to change.
Obsessive Compulsive have got everything that's required to buck this trend. Their tunes are tight, tough and anthemic. They are heavy but pack a punk rock energy to what they are doing. Their songs are catchy as fuck and connect directly with their fan base. You listen and you know that this sounds like a potentially massive band who easily transcend the local band syndrome. They have the emotional raw power and they have the songs and they have the smarts and the work ethic to make this work.
Oh and they also have a charismatic front woman in Keli who Mancunian gig hounds may know from working at the Academy venues in the city. Keli has an amazing voice, somewhere between a powerful guttural and yet soulfull shriek and a throat scraping scream that also caries the great tunes from the band. Her voice is the sound of exuberant lust for life and rainy day frustration and it cuts though the bullshit like a knife.
She is a star in the making, she looks great and she lives the high decibel life. Her band are rock solid noise droogs who spew out a thundering and perfect racket and they got the songs.


September 17, 2009

The new video for the upcoming Rammstein single ‘Pussy’ is hilarioushttp://www.visit-x.net/rammstein/

– taking rock music to its logical and ugly conclusion. Over a dark neo-eurobeat song the band croon about sex using every single German cliche they can think of in the lyrics. The video is pure porn and designed to annoy. There is no way it will get played anywhere but its desire to create a fuss will mean more than a million plays on those endless TV channels that drone on in the background.

Some will say that the video is sexist and degrading but that’s missing the point. Rammstein have always played this game- throwing up dark and ugly subject matter into the mainstream, causing trouble- its a rare harking back to the punk rock era of pushing boundaries and seeing what happens. It has no interest in ‘good taste’ and implicitly understands that good taste is the enemy of the revolution. It could be argued that it is pure porn to sell records or it could be argued that the men are getting more degraded than the women with their cliched sexual desires getting parodied by the band or it could have ben a sly joke by the group whose dark sense of humour has always been apparent on their great videos. Maybe all three are true- hopefully the band will never explain and leave the video there to confuse.

This is a rock music thats not pretending and owning up to the carnal lust that occupies its grubby heart and then exagerated go the point of comedy.

%d bloggers like this: