Les Savy Fav: Let's Stay Friends

By: Dennis Cook

With so many bands simply copying the music of the 1980s in recent years it's refreshing to find one that actually internalized that decade's sonic zeitgeist and then evolved their own ferociously unique sound. Sure, you'll pick up more than a hint of early U2 and Killing Joke in Les Savy Fav but it's a talent to conjure the unforced grandeur of the former and the power drill buzz and head charge of the latter, especially in one band. Culturally savvy, oozing punk soul and jerky dance floor mojo, Let's Stay Friends (French Kiss) is unbelievably good. Few things this book smart groove with such conviction. This is the sound of modernity lighting buildings up and then partying with a few lines of yeyo AND a few lines from Carl Jung.

The darkness and disconnection of the fractured, poetic lyrics is countered by the bright, ringing guitars and artfully clipped drums that unexpectedly explode into battering rock or gentle dub corridors and back again with real dexterity. Les Savy Fav has been around since 1995 but none of their earlier work has moved with this level of focus or bite. Thoughtful and deeply enjoyable, Let's Stay Friends is just the cup of bile we need to wash down the dumbness of 24 hour television, endless wars and a sense of collective entitlement that makes compassionate thinking people choke every day.

JamBase | Brooklyn
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[Published on: 2/4/08]

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