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Slaves are a Medway two-piece who trade in dirt cheap, sneering agit-punk that smears its spots with the juices of its lefty ancestors, UK Subs, Crass, Flux of Pink Indians and the like. A pretty thrilling proposition, although so far the band have had relatively little exposure - a fact that might have something to do with their terrifying live reputation.
Global capitalism is clearly something these folks want torn open and ripped to bloody chunks. Themes of wage slavery, cultural malaise and head-exploding ennui inform the nine urgent cum-shots of this self-released and very angry-sounding mini L.P.
Despite the blatancy of Slaves' sentiment, one gets the impression these frustrations are genuine and there's a sense of humour present which saves them from sounding po-faced. "The world's gone AWOL/Looking for a payroll/Everybody's involved" intones Laurie Vincent on 'it's an epidemic', while lyrics like "throw yourself from the 28th floor/take acid in a hardware store" ('suicide') induce mental pictures of cheap thrills and Morrisons' car parks. At their best, they suggest a fusing of The Reatards' teen garage nihilism with the dry detachment of Wire's Colin Newman but they're also likely to flick the overdrive switch on some listeners' cringe receptors.
On the second side, Slaves ramp up their pop sensibilities; 'She grew old' is a standard sexist knees-up in the conceptual mould of The Stooges' 'Your pretty faces is going to hell', while 'White Knuckle Ride', a mid-paced DC style anthem, is easily the best song on the record. "you're so boring when you're nice" moans the chorus, while a lairy outro refrain distils the mysteries of a broken relationship with all the subtlety of a plane crash" - Edgar Smith, NME (reviewing 'Sugar Coated Bitter Truth'
"SOMEBODY PLEASE GET ME THE FUCK OFF THIS RODEO!" has gotta be lyric of the week, right? It's courtesy of Kent two-piece Slaves, who leave the flecks of blood proudly stained on their guitars. Whether they're merely next in line to be the new Iceage/Zulu, or actually the full-blown re-embodiment of Crass for the new generation remains to be seen - but they feature a stand-up drummer who also sings, so they're alright by us. "Genre isn't and issue with these two" we're told. "They are angry young men who are up for a laugh, going out on the lash and wanting to shout about it. No show is complete without the guys taking their shirts off and getting the whole room skanking" - NME (on Slaves being featured as number 1 buzz band of the week).
"Only two members in this garage / punk / skin sounding band. One of those where so much noise from two people seems somehow impossible. This has the energy and attitude that you know instantly is not a front and they mean to shake things up. This is a “genre” of music that gets little if any mainstream play in the UK, and it is a great shame, as hearing this in the middle of a bland radio show would make everyone pay attention – as you should. This is available on a pay what you like download, get it and put your music player on shuffle until it comes up" - Tom Robinson (BBC 6 MUSIC) on 'Nervous Energy'
"Slaves are brilliant. A pair of punks from Maidstone, their spit-in-your face songs contain more comedy, noise and boozed-up aggro than 47 series of danny dyer's deadliest men" - The Fly
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