The War Room
Test Card Recordings
British duo Public Service Broadcasting take audio snippets that are in the public domain and recontextualise them, shaping words from the past into tunes for the present/future by layering both rock and electronica ideas underneath the extracts from propaganda films. In this case, for their second EP – available as download or on vinyl – it’s all British war propaganda diatribes and monologues and they really do take on new life with glowing grooves pulsing beneath.
If you’ve liked The Books and Ratatat and want to imagine some middle/common ground then this will do the trick.
But I know that’s a little cute and easy – as far as marrying two vague-vestiges of their sound up. Actually I started hearing the roll and churn and pulse of An Emerald City, unlikely the bands know each other perhaps, but it was nice to be reminded of aspects of their sound here.
Public Service Broadcasting does a nice line in politically charged esoterica – and as with Ratatat there are guitars that crunch through, but the comparison actually stops there for nothing sounds as primitive and naively noodly. This pushes on, sure of its self, with all certainty. And the playing is dynamic, exciting – the playing is what makes this project work; it’s what drives it.
The two members of the group are J. Willgooese, Esq. (guitar, banjo, samples, keys) and Wrigglesworth (drums, piano, sequencers). It’s a huge sound they’ve created, very art world/installation meets soundtrack-score but there’s a rock-band attitude as well as traces of dance music, downbeat and electronica.
And since the release of this 5-track EP (and I think the format works well for this act, performing this sort of soundscape-styled material; not sure I’d want to deal with a whole album) they’ve released a new single – not included here. It might appeal to Kiwis as much as anyone else. Interesting band. I like this EP; just 20 minutes – I’ve been playing it heaps.