Album Review

Les Aus – “Harrana Hanne ” – [Simple Social Graces]

Thurston Hunger   10/19/2006   12-inch, A Library

Until now, KFJC has been lacking in its “Simple Social Graces”
(the label that is). Fortunately that is corrected by this
recent brash bash from Les Aus. A duo from Spain, Arnau Sala
(guitar) & Dalmau Boada (drum whipper) play with an abandon
that is admirable. Sala’s electric work is chunky and dunked
in reverb at times, his acoustic work has flamenco frenzy,
but a giant energy insertion comes from Boada’s wildhaired
work with the sticks. That and some crazed singing, I would
venture that when they sing, even people who speak Catalan
have no idea what they are saying most of the time. I could
have sworn the title track had them singing, “I don’t give
a damn, I don’t give a damn” over and over, instead of
phonetically “Hah rah nah hah ney, Hah rah nah hah ney.”
There’s a lot of (I think) wordless singing in other parts,
as well as whistling and shrieks of exuberation. The lead
track has an Andes-to-Andalusian pan-flute panic. But #2
launches into a fisty rocker, with squiggly vocals. By the
time #3 “El Matagalls” attacks with its cooing vocals over
rattling motorcycle guitar, look out. Yes indeed this is
fine wild-haired noisy but tuneful rock that *will* leave
a mark. Hold the cheese, this is crisp and tasty!

-Thurston Hunger

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