>Subtlety – like most things in life – can be both a virtue and a pest. It’s generally considered to be A Good Thing, but then also consider that Jazz is generally considered to epitomise musical subtlety, and as Tony Wilson said, “Jazz is the last refuge of the untalented”. So then, good on Today’s New Band, The Velvet Orchestra, who haven’t just eschewed subtlety, so much as beating it to death with blunt instruments, and even when it was dead, just kept on going.
It’s temping to think that The Velvet Orchestra took a step back from events, pondered and then emerged with the considered opinion that if you’re going to go mental in a room with a bunch of friends, you may as well do it with noisy instruments. This is probably the correct observation, as their songs buzz with manic energy, the band throwing everything at the song just to see what comes out at the other end.
What does come out of the other end are songs like The Creator, which may be the elevator music they play as you descend to Hell. The song jerks around wildly, thrashing with excitement and horror, and you, the innocent listener, can only hang on for the ride. In Wolves Crave Horrible Tongues, The Velvet Orchestra tread the same risky path of all-in bonkers noise-making, but again, happily, they pull it off.
Like when painting, knowing when to stop is one of the hard parts of making music, and they know when not to push harder when the temptation must be great, ensuring their songs are just on the right side of overwhelming. Great. Hear their songs right here!