Kubichek! - Not Enough Night (30:30)
30 Mar 2007
a rock beast of a debut from the futurhead-befriending geordies, another one of those bands who insist on having punctuation! in! their! name!; release - '07
We here like to think of ourselves as connoisseurs of undiscovered talent, and as bands like South Street, The Taste and Foals get us all hot under the collar it's clear to see that the next wave of mutilation in sound form will take the shape of rough and ready rock that's beyond what everybody else out there is doing. A lot of music being released right now is what you could call 'day time music', and as great as The Maccabees and Good Shoes may be, they're just far too cheerful, naive and sunny for the grime of city life and 9 to 5-dom. We're looking for something with more to offer when the lights go down.
Kubichek! are a band who have been touring interminably over the past year, and their sound has matured into the 12 (or 11 really) tracks that embrace their roasting debut album, 'Not Enough Night'. The intro to said album seems like a waste of a track, and although it plays as a nice welcome it only lasts a few seconds in a rather frivolous way... not that you'll really care as the first proper track on the album is an unblundersome assault of swerving melodies that fringe on an Idlewild-like sense of orientation and gusto. 'Roman Is Better' is an affirmed live triumph and rightly takes its place at the foot of the album, moving around like a nut stuck in a jockstrap, beating itself brainless with hammering drums and soaring vocals. Like 'Taxi' it folds you into the centre of the album instead of building you up like their nearest rivals Bloc Party did on their recent, and in many ways analogous, album.
Throwing away the blueprint for a modern rock composition that states you have to grow your sound adding peaks and troughs as it progresses, Kubichek! have made an LP that starts as it means to go on and when their biggest tune 'Nightjoy' punts in, it's evident to see that the level of rambunctious stuttering that comprised the first few minutes has the ability to sustain itself throughout. The vocals are mildly shouty, engaging and well-heeled, conjuring up dreams of Ian Curtis fronting New Order, marrying the cavernous and cutting connotation with a floor-sweeping grasp of searing guitars and plastered percussion. The next wave of bands will all be throwing down their tuneful, light-hearted manners for a sound like this and thanks to the aforesaid Bloc Party and this album, the nation will be ready for them.
The biggest surprise on the album is 'Hope Is Impossible' which flounces anybody wondering if there's little more to the band than a string of hardcore guitar whipping. There was once a time when Coldplay made good, humble, music and at the height of their game they would have counted themselves auspicious to have made anything half as intrinsic and shifting as this. The hunt of the opening verse promptly turns into a chase for grandeur and as the music manhandles itself, bubbling beneath the surface until it erupts like a prepubescent dream, soaking the sheet of harmonies that try to wrestle with a series of riffs that holster your interest. The strings take on a life of their own and become the centre point of the track - which is a shame as it also has what's probably the second best vocal display. The Snow Patrol-like climax crashes like a thousand stars falling at once to the feet of a confused child who can only look on in mystification and awe that Kubichek! are capable of creating and repeating enormity time and time again as 'Not Enough Night' continues its rip through time.
At this point most albums would fall apart, but Kubichek! continue to push like smashed rugby players into 'Stutter' which lays down and allows itself to be courted and raped by its listeners, rolling around in pits of ecstatic glee and scorching soberness. Harking and barking lead vocals and guitar demolishing lend a hand to pull it back on track only to be thrown away seconds later as it shifts and becomes something else entirely. You can't take your eyes off this song for a second as it'll crumple under you, swallowing your innocence and confidence in an apogee of sick bass lines and scratching strings. Each track here seems vital and offers another keyhole view to the multiplicity of complexities that comprise each and every well-timed second of recorded sound until the albums closing minutes collide. 'Hometown Strategies' has Frog and Alan battling with each other for attention and although the abrupt and rude drumming tries to control the situation, it's the voices of valour that compel you to shake your head in scepticism and stamp your feet like an impatient child for more of the same.
The maturity and overprotective discipline that 'Start As We Mean To' shows is again surprising as it would have been so easy to bottleneck this down into an intense and thrashing bombardment of sound, but remains slight and influential, even moving, and at moments you're comparing it to James. It's the perfect way to finish an album and disintegrates into nothingness beautifully and consummately. But, lets not forget that we're talking about Kubichek! here, and precisely when you think you've climaxed 'Just Shut It Down' leaps in to spring clean your g-spot and rustle up some more sweat and tears with a hook loaded album highlight at the last fence. It's like the best sex of your life followed by the biggest pill you've ever taken leaving you vacant and hungry for more. It's only when your CD player kicks into repeat that the intro becomes genius, building you back up into 'Roman Is Better' again thus completing the circle of subterranean normality that Kubichek! effortlessly exude.
They've got a sound that a whole generation of underground and undiscovered bands are scrambling the floor to achieve and have done it more than justice for a devoted following of fans that have been paid ten fold for all the support they've shown over the past year and a half. You could flick though this album and see it as a haphazard mugging of hapless guitars and strained voices, but once you allow yourself to lose your reticence and preconception, it's a slippery slope that inevitably leads to the reason this band exist. It's not something that's going to jump out at everybody but for the people it does, it'll become an essential daily listen teetering on addiction, and a tax free and healthy one at that. There's just not enough 'Not Enough Night'.