Gilla Band (ex-Girl Band) needs no long introduction. This four-piece from Dublin was formed in the early 2010s, and consistently pleases listeners with uncompromising, loud and absolutely unique music. Their new LP Most Normal is out today via Rough Trade.
It makes no sense to allocate the group’s releases to any particular genre or look for similar bands since they really are absolute innovators. Nearly never using musical instruments in a conventional way, Gilla Band manage to create both long super hits with huge drops (as they did on their The Early Years EP & debut full-length Holding Hands With Jamie), and claustrophobic, creative experiments that can be described roughly as a horror noise (as on their second LP The Talkies).
Most Normal is probably their most carefully crafted and detailed work to date. There is absolutely everything here that we love about the group, but also a lot of new things. It is almost impossible to predict the moves here, surprises await the listeners at every turn. But still, there is some order in the overall chaos, and new tracks are brilliantly adding up to the already-released singles and completing the whole picture.
All songs deserve equal attention, but the wonderful “The Weirds” stands out in the middle of the release, a long no wave number that truly hypnotizes. Also noteworthy is the new approach to lyrics writing, Dara Kiely is as open and direct as he was never before (“Post Ryan”), but at the same time he masterfully maintains a high degree of familiar Gilla Band madness (“Backwash”, “I Was Away”) and dark humor (“Eight Fivers”, “Bin Liner Fashion”).
The only minus of the record is that it is a bit short (almost 10 minutes shorter than The Talkies). However, it is worth appreciating what we already have from the Gilla Band: three perfect albums. If we are lucky enough, we might get a fourth one too.
Listen below and get the record here (it is Bandcamp Friday today, so it is the best source to purchase it).