Boy Azooga – 1,2, Kung Fu!
With few exceptions ‘Drummer makes solo album’ doesn’t inspire much confidence or set the pulses racing. However, essentially this album is the work of one man, Davey Newington (drummer with Houdini Dax, Charlotte Church’s Pop Dungeon) and producer Eddie Al-Shakarchi (Palomino Party, Buzzard, Imogen Heap) oh and his Dad provided some strings. To put it simply this is an extraordinarily good album. Most of you will be familiar with the first couple of tracks released thus far. “Face behind her cigarette” with its monumental propulsive guitar riff, dreamy vocal and exquisite psych keys; the perfect pop single and ‘’Loner Boogie” a succinct, no nonsense indie dance floor classic. If that is all you’ve heard then the rest of the album may come as something of a surprise as there is a considerable range of musical styles. However, it manages to avoid a sense of ‘genre hopping’ through careful track sequencing and some very astute musical bridges.
The album is littered with standout moments including “Jerry” – surely the best song written about a canine friend since Lobo’s “Me and you and a dog named Boo” – and “Hangover Square” with its superb arrangement and Newington’s downbeat, forlorn vocal. The album closes with the epic ”Sitting on the first rock of the sun” which begins with a ‘Play with fire’ Jaggersque vocal and builds into a full blown rock guitar explosion. For a man who has only recently taken to playing the guitar it is hugely impressive.
It might appear hyperbolic, however we have no hesitation in saying that this is the best new album we will hear this year, it will almost certainly win the Welsh Music Prize and don’t be too surprised if it ends up with a Mercury Prize nomination. Now put those headphones on and be prepared to embrace an instant classic.