The Hickey Underworld
Arriving from Belgium like a chocolate covered time capsule from 1992 The Hickey Underworld is a no nonsense melodic rock album that tips a nod, a wink, not to mention a hop, skip and a jump in the direction of Nirvana. That’s no bad thing, Nirvana was a great band and to assist them in capturing the correct grunge groove they are ably assisted here by Nervermind’s Howie Weinberg.
The Hickey Underground get a big Music Fix thumbs up for a wicked self-deprecating sense of humour which has seen them rail against themselves for becoming ‘sell out arseholes’ and publish a wholly inaccurate track listing for this album on their MySpace site. They’ve also cornered the market in constructing a tongue-in-cheek mystique around themselves which sees the album and their website laden with cryptic, Wicker Man style pagan imagery. This is the essential ingredient which sets them above the humdrum, barfly circuit and in with a shout of developing a bit of a following in the developed world.
Pyramids and sacrificial goats aside, the album is a solid indie guitar record that ranges from the rasping, crunching power pop of Nirvana on ‘Zero Hour’ through to the more interesting melodic balladry of ‘Blue World Order’ without ever losing credibility. ‘Flamencorpse’ is almost contemporary and buzzes along like the little cousin of the Cribs ‘We Were Aborted’. Best of the bunch however is the blisteringly hot new single ‘Blonde Fire’ which has one of the most astonishing promo videos you are ever likely to see. It is on the Music Fix and I urge you to seek it out, get in on the ground floor before the rest of the world catches onto their charms.