Sleaford ModsSleaford Mods – Key Markets
Harbinger Sound
4.5 out of 5

It’s often said that music is a product of its surroundings and circumstances, so it should come as little surprise that the latest effort from the prolific Sleaford Mods, is driven by the current socio-political climate of the UK, and the duo’s fierce distaste for the way things are at the moment. And whilst the record was recorded last summer, the aspects of it that are politically focused hold no less salience following this year’s election result. For the most part however, Key Markets’ focus falls on the working class, and those for whom current politics have clearly failed.

Of course, it isn’t all politics. Nothing feels out of the firing line of vocalist Jason Williamson‘s scathing social commentary. Male models, hipster culture, even his friends’ music taste falls victim to the bile. Delivered not so much in a stream of conciousness, as a torrent, the profanity-laden verbal assault of Williamson feels like Mike Skinner, should he have been reared on a diet of Crass. An acquired taste certainly, but one whose urgency only serves to add to the venom.

Arguably the track which harbours the most resentment towards the establishment is ‘Face to Faces’ which sees Williamson’s ire at its most vehement, “this daylight robbery is now so fucking hateful it’s completely accepted by the vast majority, in chains.” he bites, rage surging from his gut like palpable heartburn ‘In Quiet Streets’ comes close to matching that however –“Miliband got hit with the ugly stick, not that it matters. The chirping cunt obviously wants the country in tatters”. Verbosity obviously isn’t the band’s strongest of points, but such liberal swearing comes not from a lack of intelligence, but the sheer conviction with which they dissect each narrative.

Detractors may well claim that little has changed since last year’s Divide and Exit and that might be true, but with little, if anything, changing for the better since the election, and more recently Osborne’s budget announcement, the band’s lyrical lambasting of all that’s wrong with British society is a welcome and cathartic tour de force, and something which definitely doesn’t need to change. In fact, one might go as far as to claim that how little fucks they appear give, is in direct correlation to how many they actually give, making Sleaford Mods one of the most important acts in the UK currently. This is a band, who like many of us, are beyond disfranchised by our government and the society it’s inevitably perpetuating. The only difference is, they’re doing more than just sharing articles about it on Facebook.

Dave Beech