Francis Harold & The Holograms - Who Said These Were Happy Times?
Who Said These Were Happy Times? Not these guys that’s for sure. Starting with the quite frankly horrifying and downright evil ‘Nightmare’, Francis Harold & The Holograms present an altogether bleaker take on noisy garage rock riffing. Bathed in reverb and a muddy lo-fi sound, this is all about screeching feedback and simple guitar lines punctuated by the unrecognisable screams of someone obviously very angry about something or other. Each song is preceded by an electronic buzz as the instruments prepare to emit an almighty thrashy, punk-rock racket. ‘Black Boots, Red Shirt, Little Boys’ is a particular highlight with its ghostly vocals and frantic fret-mangling just begging to be cranked up to 11. Once the record finishes and the ringing slowly begins to escape from your ears, you're left thinking that while it’s certainly a brutally great album, you might leave it a while before you stick it on again.