Age is the natural enemy of rock’n’roll. All too often, however, rock’n’roll’s institutionalised resistance to the ageing process has confused chronological progression with cognitive devolution: it’s possible to age while not falling into the trap of beige middle-age fatigue. And while it might contradict the dominant rock’n’roll discourse, there’s more to artistic vibrancy than consuming vast quantities of alcohol and narcotics.
And now there’s a new Spiderbait album. And it’s very, very good. Kram’s breakneck drumming kicks the album into action on Straight Through The Sun. It’s a throwback to Spiderbait’s heavy metallic origins: fast, furious and laced with the attitude of yore. Then, the counterpoint: Janet English’s lilting tones bring us It’s Beautiful, and everything is, well, absolutely fucking beautiful in a way the average suburban evangelical church hopes and pretends will one day exist.
What You Get does for speed rock what Henry Ford did for industrial efficiency. Glam rock meets garage pop meets reflective whimsy on Crazy Pants (Rockstar For A Night) and winds up dancing on the table at 4am with mad abandon; Mars is the morning after.
The album ends with Goodbye. ‘I’m sure we’ll meet again’, promises the final vocal refrain. Lets sincerely hope we do.