"LOUD" by Electrik CustardReview
I was greatly & very pleasantly surprised by the unexpected release yesterday of a new single "LOUD" by Electrik Custard featuring Mina Minné. Electrik Custard of course have long been one of our area's most exciting live bands & I have equally long wished for one of their imaginative original tracks for a volume of "Hot Music Live Presents". Chief Custard Custass Finnegan (you may know him by one of many other aliases including Mr Binx) however is nowadays the most elusive of musicians, currently roaming the land in a van & living off roadkill (I gather "LOUD" was recorded & produced in said van) so getting that sorted hasn't yet happened… so if you are reading this Ethan……
Although over the years the band has featured many fine musicians, including some with international reputations, this track is solely Custass plus South African born Mina, from the Eastern Rebels in Bristol, who describes herself as a "galatical being of light learning to observe the darkness" and it is shared with us as their first release on Leamington's Beat Rebel Records as part of their umbrella Rebel movement. We could cite therefore also the involvement of Justin J Bygrave and Clint Bruder from that organisation for helping get "LOUD" to us and Jake Beckett for mastering.
As with so much else the band has created over the years, it is positively impossible to adequately describe (you really must listen to it yourself): which is what I guess good music should always be. It's a different medium to prose after all. Custass, despite his lively stage & video persona is in fact one of the greatest musical perfectionists I know (attempts to include his work on "Hot Music Live Presents" have in fact been stymied by his sending us superb tracks for consideration and then asking us to hold back pending yet further work on them..) and one of the most imaginative in getting seemingly disparate elements to gel together (though often the clashing of elements is a key part of the Custard sound). Very contemporary in feel as always with the customary roots in dance music & urban sounds, you also get elements from around the world & the various cultures beyond our increasingly narrow shores: not just from Mina but eastern modes, variations on the ska beat, his distorted clarion trumpet. In his trademark restless style, things are constantly happening. Custass is never one to set up a beat or groove & just run with it: no bar is similar to another. Samples drop in and out as do instruments. The beat evolves & shifts so frequently than in the hands of a lesser creator, it would be incoherent. Not so here: it adds to the excitement & keeps us fully engaged throughout. The vocals entwine in all sorts of permutations & how they are processed varies constantly.
This is a very exciting track (the title & lyrics tell you all you need to know about how it will be played live) but there is so much detail to listen to that you can enjoy it repeatedly in the comfort of your own home long before you are likely to catch it on the dancefloor.
There is also an excellent video for "LOUD" (shot by Kristina Adams at "the last minute" in which Mina was available) which you can see at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7AhDpETuKaA
We hear all too little these days from Electrik Custard so this has been a big bonus: especially given that I certainly wasn't expecting it. May new tracks follow from the van as it travels around & may we begin to dream of a gig? I honestly can't remember when I last saw them, but if this is the start of renewed activity, then it is truly one of the bright spots of 2021 so far.