Black Shape


Black Shape F·U·C·K·M·E cassette

Earlier encounters with BLACK SHAPE, London-based if not necessarily Londoners, pegged them in my mind as jawdropping outsider two-man doom primitivism (with recorder solos and monologues)—a British version of SLOTH, in essence. This album-length tape is distinct from that, in that the songs are faster and it sounds a little cleaner, though we’re talking guitar heroics somewhere between HARVEY MILK and SCISSORFIGHT with a touch of SHELLAC clang-tone, so all these things are relative. The guitarist, David Burdis, also writes lyrics for the ages: genuinely funny without just doing relentless one-liners or otherwise going OTT on the zaniness (that NORMAL MAN LP from a few years back is a decent reference point, actually.) “Your Money or Your Life,” towards the end of the album, contains especially pleasing multitudes: a VAN HALEN-worthy solo, Burdis’ condensed history of capitalism (“Back in the day it was all about goods / Brought in the ships by the merchant traders / Now they trade in imaginary things / Information, numbers, ideas”), and a concluding call for solidarity with people who have to clean toilets after the world’s vomiting hordes have passed through.