I don’t often utter the word “shopping” in our house, so when I did last week my wife got excited. However, when I informed her that Shopping is this great little, post-punk band from London who in 2013 released an awesome album, Consumer Complaints, she went back to doing whatever she was doing.
Regardless of my wife’s reaction, Shopping‘s debut album is fantastic, and it’s receiving a special re-issuing by FatCat Records in advance of the trio’s forthcoming new album (due out some time later this year or early 2016). Consumer Complaints is a quick compilation of 13 songs (runs a little over 30 minutes). It’s not the blaring post-punk you would hear in METZ or Death from Above 1979, but instead the songs have a midtempo pace and some of them are melodic even a tad funky and groovy. In addition, the album ebbs towards post-rock akin to Suuns while following the punk-ish path of Speedy Ortiz.
The combination of the latter two bands can be heard on the droning “Hard As Nails” and the infectious “Moyet’s Voice”. Meanwhile, the playful “We Say You Pay”, “Get Going”, and “Right Now” echo of the punk-industrial sounds of 1970s Manchester. There’s also a touch of Sleater-Kinney’s grrrl riot movement in “Long Way Home”, where even frontwoman Rachel Aggs’ voice channels Carrie Brownstein.
Lyrically, there is repetition in some of the tracks, such as the catchy closer “Theme”, but that’s part of the appeal of Shopping. The repetitiveness doesn’t sound redundant but instead acts like another part of the band’s arrangements, especially when all three members of the band get in on the act. It’s a clever device concocted by the DIYers from East London.
Shopping are Billy Easter (bass), Andrew Milk (drums), and Rachel Aggs (lead vocals, guitar). The album can be purchased now for those in the UK and Europe, but for the rest of the world we’ll have to wait until tomorrow (Tuesday, May 26). It’ll be available on iTunes (UK/US).
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