Review: Tubelord – Our First American Friends

TubelordMuch akin to their UK and Big Scary Monsters counterparts Blakfish, Tubelord are part of a burgeoning UK music scene that involves some of the freshest and most insane bands of modern times. Their hectic wall-of-noise racket combined with catchy pop sensibilities makes for an interesting listen, to say the least.

Fans of the band have been avidly awaiting their debut full -length after they went into the studio earlier this year, with rising producer Tristian Ivemy (The Holloways, The Mescalitas), and here it is; just ten tracks and exactly forty minutes – Our First American Friends.

The album starts off quite slowly (by Tubelord’s frenetic standards, anyway), with the gradually-building Your Bed Is Kind Of Frightening, which ascends into a hand-clapped bridge after reaching a mid-paced plateau after the soft piano intro.

Somewhere Out There A Dog Is On Fire is a fast moving behemoth of a track. Gaining momentum throughout the opening minutes, it builds and builds, the apocalyptic drums giving the listener an intense sense of unease and impending doom, before it all comes crashing back down, everything falling perfectly into place with everything else.

The quirkiness continues throughout; track after track of weird and wonderful musicianship holds the listener’s attention, slipping between softer tracks and the more typical Tubelord sound that their fans are used to seamlessly.

Old favourite I Am Azerrad is probably the standout point of the record. Slices of pop genius, coupled with the aforementioned vocals and a refrain of ‘I’ll see today/I’ll see you, Azerrad’ (which rapidly moves on to a decidedly more sinister ‘I’ll kill today/I’ll kill you, Azerrad’) has not only got the man Azerrad himself writing articles about it in Spin magazine, but it is an intriguingly addictive three-and-a-half minutes, immediately calling you back for more the moment it comes to an end. It is everything that epitomises Tubelord, packed into 211-seconds.

The off-the-wall titling continues with Cows To The East, Cities To The West, which, upon first impression, is as nonsensical as its title suggests, but may well turn out to have some deep metaphorical meaning. Who knows?

It reaches an emphatic end with the title track, a five-and-a-half minute epic, which once again crams in every ounce of that essential and unique Tubelord essence, before reaching a crescendo that invites you back to give another 40-minutes of your time experiencing this frenzied and urgent affair all over again.

Tubelord’s distinctive brand of disjointed beats and riffs intertwine with slabs of hugely infectious melodies throughout, that will weave their way into your head and not leave for weeks on end. This, coupled with Jo Prendergast’s enigmatic and unmistakeable vocal stylings make Tubelord an experience you will not forget in a hurry.

Daisy Long.


The album Our First American Friends by Tubelord is out October 12th on Hassle Records.

Tubelord tour the UK in October with This Town Needs Guns, for tour dates and more information visit: www.myspace.com/tubelord

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