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Review: 'The Brainiac 5'
'We're Ready!'   

-  Label: 'Reckless Records'
-  Genre: 'Indie' -  Release Date: '29.9.17.'-  Catalogue No: 'CD106'

Our Rating:
Yes the Brainiac 5 are back with the second album since they re-formed and for me they are one of those bands I knew about and heard the odd song here and there over the years without actually ever seeing them or really getting into them so I come at this as a total newbie unable to compare this to any of the bands previous work.

The album opens with Drinking Song and they tell us how ready they are for another drink will sounding like a slightly punky power pop band in the vein of Human Hands after they re-formed a few years ago.

The Holy Tangible is not surprisingly in a similar vein really well played and I can't quite put a finger on what it reminds me of but it has a familiar feel to it how tangible are the memories within the lyrics well pretty tangible that's for sure as the drums really drive it along.

Wave has some really cool harmonica on the intro before it seems to explode into life and the story of the central characters life unfolds over the 8 minute song that has several musical breakdowns and a rather cool bass interlude as well as a nifty guitar solo as they move about and try to wave their life goodbye and not to sleep with everyone they meet in case they end up with the flautist.

From The Doorway is the most concise track on the album with lyrics that sound like a short poem of despair over some interesting instrumentation and possibly backwards guitars.

She's free (a.k.a. Trotsky) has a cod reggae feel to it and guest vocals from Jessie Pie whose in love with a girl whose not in love with her and might actually be more in Love with heroin than her while the chorus sounds more indie rock than the cod reggae of the verses as the song switches between the two it's like they are struggling with the duality of the situation when they have fun together everything's cool but it isn't always that way. The reference to Trotsky is in that it's apparently a re-working of the band's tune of that name from 1978.

My Time sounds like they have gone all Joe Jackson on us but with some cool and sort of urgent guitars as they hope it's been worth biding their time to get too the truth and it's also pretty power pop as well.

Night Games opens up all dubby and spaced out with guitar breaks punctuating the lyrics about love lust and the games we get up to in the middle of the night. It eventually takes on a musical flight of fantasy that is like a musical climax to the song.

The Album closes with a very odd cover of Sun Ra's Space Is the Place (for Sun Ra), or have they just written a new song with the same title, more of the latter really that they re-contextualize into a power pop almost proggy work out that's almost unrecognisable from the classic space jazz jam that it is normally played as, it takes it off to places that even the dodgy US demo by Andalusian Dogs in the mid 80's never dreamed of I think this version will horrify many Sun Ra heads.

This is an interesting album and certainly has some good stuff on it, if you already like the Brainiac 5 I'm pretty sure you'll love this album, for me I am just about converted! Find out more at www.brainiac5.co.uk https://reckless.co.uk/record-label/
  author: simonovitch

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