Animals That Swim – How to make a chandelier (from the album Workshy, One Little Indian)

A bracing cut from the heady days of 1994, now remastered and reissued and sounding arguably miles more relevant than in those pre-Blair days.

There’s a certain post punk feel, some kind of bearing, authority, swagger. Not just in Hank Starrs’ deadpan but somehow not lacking pathos semi-spoken vocal (something in it would remind you of Stewart Lee somehow). But in the genius guitar riffs, two of them, non-identical twins - the first a seemingly friendly Britpop wolf in sheep’s clothing, the second consisting of mostly the same notes but with a bend and a twist and a smear of rock n roll danger about it.

In the space of only two minutes, there’s also room for a pummelling breakdown and a blaring trumpet crescendo.

And all the way through the existential lyric, the epitome of lying in the gutter but looking at the stars - trying to make a chandelier from the glass of car windows broken by his own hand but only succeeding in cutting himself.

Thrilling rock n roll but more than that too. Earthy. Poignant. Beautiful.


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