POP: Mylo Foundation Newcastle oooo9
Tuesday 08 February 2005
Not that the three-piece have poodle-perms; it's more the riffs they engage with. So, rather than a dance music extravaganza, we're treated to a barrage of hooks lifted from Van Halen, Toto, Foreigner and even ELO - albeit ones dancing to the beats of classic house.
Anyone familiar with Mylo's Destroy Rock & Roll album will recognise the soft rock references. However, where the recorded versions were tempered by echoes of Parisian house culture (Super Discount, Air, Daft Punk etc), live, Mylo's music goes for the rock riff jugular. And it's all the better for it.
Previously, Mylo could have been accused of smoothing off the sharp edges. Everything about the album, from its polite anger to its artwork of designer punk stencilling, suggested a heavily stylised recreation of old fashion revolutions.
But the live band add a discordant (and occasionally out of tune) edginess to proceedings. "Guilty of Love" revels in its ludicrous soft rock-isms, turning them instead into an orgy of low slung grooves. "In My Arms" explores similar territory, but with an added element of Eighties tech-funk, Cameo style, while "Drop the Pressure" is turned from the old school house celebration of the original into an altogether dirtier marriage of Eighties mutant disco and contemporary R&B.
However, it's with the surging energy of "Paris Four Hundred" that the band really come into their own. A monstrous riff shudders and rolls under the weight of pinpoint bass chops and crunching guitars.
Strangely, the album's title track (and current single) is thrown away as the opening tune. However, as the song's spoken list of cheesy Eighties bands unfolds to the backdrop images of that era's most embarrassing album covers, it quickly becomes clear that this band are more about homage to rock's yuppie era excesses than simple destruction.
Indeed, Destroy Rock & Roll could offer an alternative soundtrack to American Psycho. The pop cultural obsessions are the same. Thankfully, the violence isn't. Not that the girl whose head is split open when Mylo throws his wine bottle into the audience would agree. But, hey, when you're busy destroying rock'n'roll what's the odd injury between friends?
Mylo is probably the most interesting artist to have emerged from behind dance music decks and into the glare of the mainstream this decade. Sadly for the house cognoscenti, he's about as likely to dance on the grave of rock'n'roll as he is to drop a purist four to the floor house anthem. In fact, Mylo comes to praise rock'n'roll, not to destroy it.
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