Ytterligare ett tecken på det jag alltid vetat – jag har ett minne som en guldfisk.
Artikeln om Manchesterbandet WU LYF som öppnade mina ögon för dem, var inte alls publicerad i NME:s Band of the Week (den artikeln var skit trist), utan istället The Guardians förträffliga New Band of the Day. Så nu kidnappar jag rätt och slätt hela texten, så ni slippa leta runt och gå vilse i jakten. Dessutom har jag ingen aning om varför jag fick för mig att debutalbumets titel var DIRT, för det stämmer inte alls – utan dess namn är istället (och korrekt) Go Tell Fire to the Mountain.
Wu Lyf (No 743)
This mysterious crew appear to be some kind of strange Manc cult, full of quasi-spiritual fervour and revolutionary intent
(Paul Lester, guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 10 March 2010)
The lineup: Jeau, Lung, Elle Jaie and Evanse.
The background: Oh, to be baffled in this digital day and age, when so little is left to the imagination. Even writing about brand new bands you find that, more often than not, everything is spelled out at the first possible opportunity, which makes the joy of discovering something unformed and obscure that much harder. It must be harder still for the bands to retain any mystique or reveal themselves slowly over time. To keep out of the spotlight completely is virtually impossible. All credit to Wu Lyf, then, because even in this overlit environment they are proving difficult to decipher, to get a fix on, which makes us very happy indeed. They’re baffling.
They’re from Manchester, and they’re not signed, we know that, although their gigs have for a while now been attracting a lot of A&R attention. The only photographs we’ve seen of them show them standing in front of a purple haze of smoke, their faces covered by white handkerchiefs, like they’re a terrorist cell or something. In one photo there are six of them, in another there are 10, while their website – their MySpace is so unfathomable it’s literally useless – names four individuals. So far, so confusing.
That website of theirs just adds to the confusion. Over eight pages they feature contrasting cut-up images of sexed-up westerners and Third World deprivation, cryptic messages (”Tell me what it look like tell me what it is”) and pronouncements with religious overtones such as ”on the twelth [sic] of December it was my mothers [sic again] birthday, Zion Bru saw 21 years and Wu Lyf played Heavy Pop”. This notion of Wu Lyf as some kind of strange Manc cult is enhanced by the realisation that Wu Lyf stands for World Unite – Lucifer Youth Foundation. There is, in addition, a statement of sorts on their website that reads: ”The Lucifer Youth Foundation (World Unite) are kids that play heavy, lost brothers looking for a place to call home …” It is followed by biblical portents of infernos and all manner of geological cataclysm.
There is a sense here of quasi-spiritual fervour, of revolutionary intent, of myths being made. Meanwhile, the idiosyncratic deployment or disfigurement of language and semantics continues with their list of song titles, provisionally included under the banner, ”The Weak Weak Lil Girl Demos”: Christ Mass, Lucifer Calling, Spitting It Concrete Like a Golden Sun God, Diamond Voices Sing Diamond Songs, Concrete Gold and Heavy Pop. Tantalising as hell.
We haven’t even mentioned the music yet! Basically, the stupefaction doesn’t stop with their ideas and ideology. Such a Sad Puppy Dog is a new sound that we’re going to term krautrock gospel, with the singer’s extraordinary larynx-shredding vocals – think bastard child of Tom Waits – adding to the delirium. It closes with some rap noir that makes us think of Mobb Deep produced by Dr Dre in a tomb. Concrete Gold is shimmery yet scabrous. And Heavy Pop is both terrifying and uplifting, like Spiritualized in a scuffle with Swans. This is a bit more what we were expecting from Egyptian Hip Hop, to be honest. The only comparison point from the last quarter-century that we can come up with is early Happy Mondays when they were purveyors of scummy white trash funk with surrealist lyrics, but even that doesn’t really come close. Like we say, baffled.
The buzz: ”They twitch about onstage, thrilled at their own genius, impatient for the future, reinventing the wheel yet again. Wu Lyf are fucking brilliant.”
The truth: We heartily concur, and just hope and pray they retain their wilful perverse obliqueness once they get signed.
Most likely to: Confound.
Least likely to: Condescend.
What to buy: Nothing till they’re signed.
File next to: Egyptian Hip Hop, Health, Happy Mondays, Swans.
WU LYF med låten Heavy Pop:
an article on the manchester band WU LYF, from the guardians new band of the day section. it was the piece i read about the band, that really opened my eyes to them. and the guardian section is quite good too, if your have grown tired of all the band you like, and want a fresh new band in you life. the bands are quite diverese, differend genres and sounds.