Oxford’s Fat Possum records (Oxford, Mississippi that is) is quickly becoming one of the most important and talked about labels in modern indie rock. From humble roots focusing on Mississippi blues, the label now boasts some of the best indie rock bands of the last 10 years. Yuck’s self-titled debut album stands along side the likes of, The Black Keys, Band Of Houses, Paul Westerberg, Dinosaur Jr., Crocodiles and Wavves.
There is a clear similarity to Wavves and Crocodiles lo-fi, reverb drenched indie rock, with the key example of this sound coming from second track ‘The Wall’, which unfortunately is not a fuzzed out Pink Floyd cover. Although there is more of a 60s/70s rock sound to the track than the 60s pop sound which surfaces on certain tracks by Wavves. Yuck, much like The Pains Of Being Pure At Heart or Best Coast, have clear and deep rooted influences in 90s ‘college rock’ and the whole ‘slacker’ image – bands like Pavement, Black Tambourine, Sonic Youth and Dinosaur Jr. all shape the sound and overall feel of this record.
To say that most songs on the album feature just walls of distorted guitar would be to sell Yuck short, both the rhythm and lead playing cleverly use a mixture of distortion, reverb and even wah-wah to build an intense but also extremely melodic set of songs. The closing two songs ‘Lilly Gives a Rose’ and ‘Rubber’ show the diversity of sounds that Yuck fit onto one album, the first is a tuneful instrumental that sounds almost like Sonic Youth meets Real Estate. What follows is a seven minute punky, shoegaze-fuzz-athon that sounds best played extremely loud (if only to confuse neighbours).
Yuck are not just another London lo-fi indie punk band, they have taken the sounds of The Jesus And Mary Chain, Pavement and Dinosaur Jr. somewhere different, while not necessary new and grown breaking, this album is a great, fun listen. Yuck are certainly around to stay and there is plenty of room for their sound to grow, so I’m sure we will be hearing lots more chill jams from this London 5 piece.
Label: Fat Possum Records