The clue’s in the name, though loyalist fans could be forgiven for thinking that Adebisi have been abducted and had their veins pumped full of pure ecstasy.
This is the Third Album by a band called Adebisi Shank
Jubilant Irish trio come of age with snap, crackle and pop
It’s like they popped out to buy batteries and returned drunk with Prince and Peter Gabriel, high-fiving Daft Punk while leaving Matt Bellamy to weep alone at the bar. The album’s fizz and sheer utopian radiance is so compelling that you might have to pause to sit down. Or stand up. Or start breakdancing.
In fairness it’s not that much of a shock – the second album (no need to spell out the title, is there?) was a daring move from plug-socket jolts to antic instrumental territory, taking glee as its raison d'être. But despite the fun and ‘robot rock’ plaudits it was prone to sudden shifts which often seemed like interruptions.
Here the songs are so potent they make a vibrant space-age story: intergalactic postcards from an adventurous android who finally learned that it’s OK to cry. Instant as amyl nitrate, opener World in Harmony brings good tidings of great joy. Like the later Voodoo Vision it’s a clattering anthem that could soundtrack the world’s most addictive videogame. Big Unit was the first song to appear online, now with an extended intro creating an even greater sense of victory.
Vinny McCrieth’s antic bassline on Turnaround suggests Paul Simon’s Graceland played at double speed by a futuristic cantina band. Throughout, Mick Roe’s synthetic-sounding drums attack as ferociously as anything programmed by Steve Albini. While they’re a sonic equivalent they remain, like the rest of the record, an emotional opposite.
Hand-clapping funk comes with Mazel Tov, possibly the brassiest and brightest dance-rock song since Sledgehammer. The saccharine Thundertruth is too much like a cute number-counting song from Sesame Street, but Sensation is just that – an outstanding, euphoric glitchy disco belter with cut-up vocals. Electronic artists like Prefuse 73 would once have considered it a crowning achievement.
The cavalcade will sound too synthesized for some, but Adebisi have elevated themselves above the glut of hyper-happy hyperactive acts – many on their own label – who have mastered the mood without mastering the craft. Chaos Emeralds is a thrilling fusion of old and new sounds, the robot vocals matched by a guitar line like a fiddle from pre-modern Ireland. Committed miseries will reject all the aplomb, but this is an unparalleled half hour from a precocious band jacked firmly into the great electrical joy machine.