The Paranoyds – Carnage Bargain

The long awaited new LP from Los Angeles four-piece The Paranoyds kicks off with the emergency siren guitar of current single ‘Face First’; a dual chord relentless roaring beneath the careless yearning of the vocal. Then straight into the super-deep bass of ‘Carnage Bargain’ – with the voice alternating each phrase with an instrumental line and big chorus it is a near-perfect pop song.

‘Girlfriend Degree’ builds on the riff from the Kinks’ ‘All Day and All of the Night’ with an excellent empowered anthem. My current favourite track is the blast of ‘Egg Salad’; it could be a tuneful song by The Fall. High praise indeed.

After that incredible four track opening the longer ‘Bear’ wanders a bit but ‘Hungry Sam’ restores the tautness and edge, also raising the organ in the mix to great effect, especially in the playout. ‘Courtney’ is a change in direction, a surreal swirling carousel of psych-pop with harmony vocals.

‘Laundry’ lasts just over a minute with the literal B-52s-ish chorus ‘…I’m doing laundry…’ , leading into the similar ‘Heather Doubtfire’, a strident and noisy many-sectioned opus, with extra energy drumming and a spooky keyboard/guitar outro.

Another favourite for me is final track ‘Ratboy’, it has the frenzy and psychedelic atmosphere of the faster Doors tracks but I could be being hypnotised by the prevalent keys, including an ominously building solo at the end…

The quartet describe their sound as a ‘…sonic balance of jubilant energy and foreboding undercurrents….‘ which is a good way of reflecting on the music. Their explanation of the band name? ‘….What isn’t there to be paranoyd about?….

Carnage Bargain is out on September 13th via Suicide Squeeze Records.

Mike Wright

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