A horrible hack

Ox Scapula

Hands Out

Year Released: 2010
Format: LP
Label: art for blind - We Like Danger - Gringo - Sea Owl
Reviewed by Andy Malcolm on Dec 15, 2010
This is one of those albums where it's hard to fall in love with the band. It's abrasive, unfriendly and unwilling to make concessions for your failings. Ox Scapula are staring too hard at their instruments. These mathy rhythms are kind of complicated you know. And the singer is concentrating on shouting disconcertingly. It's all a little bit awkward and eye contact is to be avoided. However, whilst I have mentioned that the band delight in being a little unfriendly sounding, I believe their music manages to slide somewhat comfortably into a gap on your shelf if you were a bit drunk and thought that O came between Giants Chair and Hoover. And you don't see me complaining about that. All the songs indulge in lasting at least 3 minutes, and mostly over 4. There is no room for those addled with a defecit of attention. Ox Scapula are not here to pander to your whims, they are here to hit riffy guitar grooves and keep you stumbling around off balance. There is no heed paid for those who just want to hear a bit of pop. I guess this is what happens when you come from Stoke. You either go entirely off the rails or you start a grim, brooding mathy punk band to keep yourself off the streets.

If this album wasn't out on Gringo, I'd say it should have come out on Gringo. Rock solid release.

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