You do know we only bother to review the really good albums, the cream of the new releases, we don’t cover the average, we don’t bother with most things that come our way these days, life is too short…
ALBUM REVIEW: Cheer Accident – Fades (Skin Graft Records) – The new Cheer Accident album opens in a surprisingly refreshing, rather uplifting, and without giving up a single inch of the progressiveness you’d expect from the defiantly challenging Chicago band, delightfully easy to listen to. Done is like drinking perfectly chilled water from the finest wild spring, those rocks might be sharp and edgy but that water flows so well over them A new album from Cheer Accident is always something to be excited about, something to anticipate, they’ve always been predictably unpredictable, always very obviously no one other than Cheer Accident, they’ve always been a band with a need to challenge themselves as much as they need to challenge their audience. Cheer Accident are not a band to hit on a formula and then just safely repeat the exercise again and again and by now they really should have failed at least once, surely be now they should have tripped themselves up? No, they just do it again again, they just do it, they do that thing, that “it”, that magical thing that only the very very best bands can do. This is what art really sounds like, this is awkwardly good art rock, fluidly difficult progressiveness, this is painterly, this is the sound of real artists at work, this is the real deal.
The Mind-Body Experience is very Cardiacs in a Beatles flavoured Genesis kind of way, The Mind-Body Experience is glorious, Monsters on the other hand is menacing, Fripp would be proud of it, Monsters is the edgy side of Cheer Accident, the one that doesn’t want you to be too comfortable for too long, the one that fucks with minds, that laughs at you, that laughs with you. You see Cheer Accident are a million miles away from one of those 70’s flavoured pastiches, they’re two million miles away from those dreadful bands with think they’re playing prog rock now, this is far too real to be anywhere near that tedium, and this, as we said of Star Period Star a few days back (and could easily have said about the new Piniol album as well), this is proper. Last But No Lost is laced with Philip Glass, with classic Genesis, with lots of things without ever obviously sounding like anything or anyone else other than Cheer Accident This once again is a prog as flip album, this is right up there with anything truly progressive from back then and those laughing monsters damn well know it It would be very easy to just gush over every track on this album, the standard is there throughout, the challenge, the shifts, the colours, every one a master piece and the fact that there are different vocalists adds so much when is could so easily have distracted (additional vocalists include Sacha Mullin of Lovely Little Girls fame and Carla Kihlstedt from the excellent of Sleepytime Gorilla Museum). Art Land is pure Hammill in the most positive of forward-looking ways (and you know Peter Hammill helped kick off Punk Rock back in 75 right?). This is an essential album, this is now, this is right here right now, this is 2018, and nothing about this new Cheer Accident is the least bit backward looking, the sound is very now, the production spot on, the desire and adventure is beautiful, House of Douse just pecks at you – no more touching my mouse – House of Douse is just about the best thing I’ve heard in ages, Do I is just excellent Kraut pop and an excellent conclusion that leads you round to the start and the pin-point Kraut and that aforementioned must-have-more refreshment of Done.
They’ve been around since 1981, Cheer Accident have always been good, they’ve always been challenging, always rewarding, they’ve never been that predictable, we hear tales of all kinds of live experiments over there in the US, there’s a vast back catalogue now (I just returned to the first album we encountered, 1990’s Dumb Ask, initially released over here in the UK on Neat Records, the legendary Newcastle heavy metal label, the label made a right mess of the pressing, it still sounds damn good though). And here in 2018 Fades is just a brilliant album, I really couldn’t give two hoots if the over the top nature of this review bothers you, as I keep saying around here, art excites and if I can’t gush at something as good as this then really what is the point? Fades might well be the best Cheer Accident album ever, too early to say, it is right up there though, it is a good as anything the band have done and hey, the details are there via the Bandcamp, you don’t need my words, go explore (sw) .