Uncanny Valley Girls – Knight Of Cups
It seems to be the fate of just about every punk-rocker, or metalhead worth their salt to, eventually, get back to Roy Orbison, Elvis, and the great canon of early rock n’ roll. Beyond the production that may sound out of date, and the black and white images, those early superstars of the genres managed to infuse their work with the kind of honesty and well-crafted melodies that still create devotees all over the world.
While this seems to be a natural progression for many musicians, it usually takes their fans a while to warm up to the idea. After all, when first starting to enjoy guitar music, any song that does not possess screaming, distorted six-strings, and thundering drums could merely be a trick that bad music tries to play on you.
Uncanny Valley Girls’ Knight Of Cups sounds like a tune both unconcerned with such issues, and also powerfully influenced by 50s rock. It’s a song that sounds like it had the chance to rattle in the brain of its author long before it made it on paper and then tape. This is a tune about intuition, and a willingness to change. Its quick stabs of surf guitar and clever lyrics make it stand right alongside the classic by which it was influenced.
Manners Manners – Deaccession Now!
Rock has never stood for subtlety. I’ll let you in on a secret. Really, the whole trick to getting immensely famous is to chase people’s admiration but make it seem as if you care very little about other people’s impression of you. Perhaps this is the reason why Dinosaur Jr. or Teenage Fanclub didn’t become quite as big as Nirvana or Oasis, even though many reckon they were equally as good.
It’s a bait and switch tactic that rarely fails to work, but ends up confusing the ones that found themselves chasing stardom for many years. It’s a way of playing coy, and just like filling out a dating profile, showing your very best side, all while looking disinterested in people’s affection.
Manners Manners are a group that seem to know this, but can’t get themselves to lie or be untrue. Deaccession Now! is a good, anxious piece of smart alt-rock. It’s also the result of a band wanting to communicate with an audience from the basis of even pegging. From the clever lyrics, the sharp melodies and the garage-rock guitars, this is a group that seems destined, if not for the big-time, surely for cult hero appeal.