Here Lies Man
Brudenell Social Club, Leeds.
If underground heavy music has one flaw, it’s that it seldom compels anyone to dance. Here Lies Man are hellbent on altering that, albeit in a manner that will be more than familiar to fans of Goat. The formula is simple: loping, Afro-funk beats that recall Fela Kuti and huge, turbo-fuzz riffs redolent enough of Sabbath to lure in a few rivetheads to scare the hipsters who will inevitably embrace this. Fortunately, Here Lies Man is enormously enjoyable. There’s something wonderfully boneheaded about the shuffling grooves, the surging, overdriven basslines and the thick wads of psychedelic ambience that ooze through chinks in the band’s percussive armour. Like Funkadelic at their early 70s heavy zenith or the darker works of post-punk pioneers The Pop Group, songs like I Stand Alone and Letting Go are all squalling, liberated swagger and red-eyed priapic intensity: dancefloor fillers for the black of heart. Whether there’s anything lurking beneath the surface is another matter, but it’s refreshing to hear distorted guitars used to vent rampant, midhallucination libido.