Fight Like Apes have been around for many years, serving up an Irish answer to fellow female fronted band Yeah Yeah Yeahs.
With Jake Summers and Lend me your face, particularly reminiscent of of YYYs’ ballsier tracks, remaining firm favourites among
Irish indie music fans, every time word comes out about a new release the anticipation is palpable.
It has been over three years since the release of second album ‘The Body of Christ and The Legs of Tina Turner” so the announcement of a new single and impending EP, ‘Whigfield Sextape’ comes with much expectation. The name of the EP is a giveaway of what is to come. For younger readers, ‘Whigfield’ were the pop outfit that released “Saturday Night” (who still knows the dance routine?) 20 years ago; it is probably the definition of pop music. What lies on this EP is their usual rambunctious fiestiness toned down a fraction with electro-pop elements. Hence, Whigfield Sextape; at least that is this bewildered blogger’s take on it.
Purist fans will be let down by this one; the type of fans that like to hang onto a band’s earlier days, regardless of the fact that when people making the music grow their music develops alongside them.
It is almost as if the band’s early 20s angst has melted away and revealed a more mature, subtle and melodic side. Lead single Crouching Bees is a delightful track with lead vocalist MayKay displaying her unique and piercing vocals at their best. The simplistic chorus of “Hey- ay- eh-ay” feels like a tip towards their celtic heritage, which works well over a cheerful melody.
The rebellious side to the band remains in the lyrics of some of these tunes, with Tyson taking a swing at the band members that left (Don’t leave this band, you’ll go insane) and Bwah! in which they recall the sharpness in which their songs are delivered: “We’re making tunes with spinal chords”.
If you are expecting Fight Like Apes to deliver a carbon copy of their earlier work, this is not what you are going to get from the ‘Whigfield Sextape’ EP. You are going to get something a little more progressive, exacted and melodic, which works well with MayKay’s intense vocal. The EP is very about Fight Like Apes and how they percieve their development and approach to making music, so it is fitting that it is a step away from their previous work.
While we may here grumbles about their latest work not being “the same” as their first releases, their ability to embrace a slightly fresher sound is commendable. Wouldn’t it be boring if a band released the same style of music every time they made a new album or EP? Fight Like Apes are thinking forward in terms of their style and what lies forward is more progressive development, more delectable tunes, and more fantastic releases.