"Seasonal Aisle" by Monday NightsReview
As I mention from time to time in the magazine, I relish long anticipated releases (though I do get frustrated sometimes waiting to be able to tell you about them) yet perversely I can get excited by hearing tracks I had no prior idea even existed. Such a one is the new Monday Nights single "Seasonal Aisle" which has appeared out of the blue (and comes out three days hence). The difference this time is that even the band seem surprised to be releasing it…..
I think we can file this one under that general heading of "immediacy" where music overlaps with journalism almost in terms of turnaround or topicality or both: many artists not excluding John Lennon have taken this route and come out with songs delivered by the express lane.
The sound "Seasonal Aisle" opens with signals this mood & pace: probably the most raucous Monday Nights intro.
I've been having various conversations recently regarding the almost relentless reduction of the canon of Christmas songs played by mainstream media & on loop in retail environments. My attempts to post alternatives (including some crackers by "Hot Music Live Presents" featured artists such as Jack Blackman and the Beautiful Wreck or Deathsex Bloodbath) have made very few dents in this rigid "culture". Nevertheless, Monday Nights are the latest admirable artists to take on the challenge of trying to encapsulate genuine contemporary (mostly shopping) Christmas experiences & shunning glib cliches cut & pasted from countless dishonest but stunningly successful hoary old songs.
Beyond this, what we get is a good admixture of genuine angst and lashings of humour: attributes which throw new light upon a band hitherto best known for much more transcendent and delicate songs (though "Turrah" did introduce a note of "weirdness"). Little by little, release by release, a full and balanced vision of who Monday Nights actually are, is building.
Despite the delightful zest of the spontaneity "Seasonal Aisle", the performances are as nuanced and careful as any previous song. What may impress you as it did me is how frenetic passages like the opening (with the busiest of riffs) alternate with much more measured ones containing the verse vocals: the very abrupt gear changes being handled with aplomb (though I bet it took plenty of hard practice).
Tongues are in and out of cheeks, fresh fun abounds. If you are tired of the over familiar festive fare of what Joe from Deathsex Bloodbath described as ‘Now That's What I Call Music: The Christmas Album' (a state of mind as much as an artefact) and wish to freshen your jaded palate, then put "Seasonal Aisle" on your personal menus.