Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Review: 'Night Work' by Scissor Sisters for Tom Magazine

 For TOM Magazine.
Night Work (Universal)


 Scissor Sisters danced onto the scene in 2004 and won the world over (aside from the US, their home country) with their unashamedly camp disco-pop sensibilities, and overt sexuality. Their third release has a lot to live up to, and it delivers, leaving a big, pink lipstick kiss on the ass cheek of those who didn’t think they could make something even catchier. The cover art says everything you need to know to decide if this is the album for you  -  and trust me, it is. Sex? Check. Obligatory retro vibe? Check. Camp and over the top? Check. Night Work is a little bit glam rock, a little bit modern electronic, but very much Scissor Sisters.

Lead single, ‘Fire With Fire’, is an anthemic, slower paced track, with singer, Jake Shears unique vocals taking the focus. It is the exception from the rest of the album, representing their softer side  -  a 2010 ‘Land of a Thousand Words’, really. If you don’t get into it at the start, by the time the final chorus rolls around you won’t be able to refrain from belting it out. The title track is catchy ‘80s inspired fun that leaves the listener with images of the band running on the spot in legwarmers and sweatbands chanting, "Nananananana night work".  ‘Whole New Way’, and ‘Something Like This’, while still being instantly recognisable Scissor Sisters, have a cleaner electronic sound. This polish could be due to their working with producer Stephen Price. The most effective tracks on this record, however, are those crazy, sexy moments where they haven’t stripped back any excesses.

‘Any Which Way’ is the musical fruit of the loins of The Bee Gees and The Bloodhound Gang with backing vocals by Kylie Minogue. That last part is actually true. It’s a sexually charged retro romp, with vocalist Ana Matronic declaring, "I’m gonna find that man, who’s the right shade of bottle tan/ a man that smells like cocoa butter and cash/ Take me any way you like it, in front of the fire place, in front of your yacht, in front of my parents". ‘Running Out’ is another standout, lyrically, it’s clever and has a level of depth, but come the chorus, it’s still danceable. Closing the record on a high, is ‘Invisible Light’ which Ana Matronic calls a "magical song". It is unexplainably likable in the same way as Empire of the Sun’s ‘Walking on a Dream’. It is a psychedelic pop mix bag, with gloriously camp voiceovers and synth layering, and a winning falsetto chorus. It is almost too much, but if anyone can pull it off, it’s these guys.
(Anna Angel)

Original article here.

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