Graham Reid | | 1 min read
There's always something appealingly quirky and almost quaint about Auckland's Superturtle helmed by Darren McShane.
As with their previous albums, Wait For It comes on vinyl with a striking front cover and a back cover layout like an album from the Sixties. (There is the download option, see below.)
It makes for a classy-looking product, but its what's in the grooves which have always reenforced just how much pop history McShane (and his fellow travellers) have absorbed and re-purposed as short, tightly focused pop-rock songs which mostly refer to the Seventies-to-Nineties.
The opener here for example has a reductive garageband pop (not rock) sound and a drum/bass punch which could come off like a glitter stomp live. Lyrically it has a kind of early Lou Reed cyncism.
And after the sound of someone inhaling through a hookah, I Love Those Cigarettes is a minimalist paean to cigarettes (“short one, fat ones, stick 'em up your arsehole . . . it's such a happy day”) with ear-cleansing guitar texture.
They chip out urgent pop (Take It Away, Back At You) alongside jerky, nervous-energy dance-pop (Bad for Business) and brittle angry pop-rock (WTFRU).
Here too is post-punk outsider UK pop-rock (Not My Cup of Tea and Dress the Same, the latter which could almost be a jibe at Th'Dudes' Bliss at one point) driven by thrillingly distorted guitars . . . which also come to the fore on the heavily brooding Wait For It which sounds made for some dark, criminal Netflix series soundtrack.
And the closer Watch Your Eyes is great slice of memorable, almost-jangle pop with a great hook and riff.
So . . . taut, emotionally anxious, economic songs with barbed lyrics across an old-school album-length running time from Superturtle.
With a “hit” right at the end.
You can find Superturtle's music at bandcamp here.