KEG - Girders (Alcopop! Records/BMG)

KEG – Girders (Alcopop! Records/BMG)

As with the rise of Brighton contemporaries Squid, there has been a lot of hype around seven- piece KEG since their breakthrough singles ‘Heyshaw’‘ and ‘Farmhand’ last year. However, forget any comparisons you’ve heard. They’re not ‘the next Dexy’s Midnight Runners‘ (okay, so they do have a trombone player). Same goes for Talking Heads, Devo or LCD Soundsystem. With such an array of references, you should conclude that informed opinions still don’t agree on what KEG are really about. Girders, their new EP, offers up six new clues into their cockamamie world.

The first, ‘5/4’ loiters menacingly with a sickly opening dripping in grease and sweat before Albert Haddenhams manic squall of a voice throws sparks, igniting some fuzzy chaos guitar duelling. The title track doubles the pace and heat, lurching between tightly-wound skittering beats and staggering blasts of sardonic lyrical energy, belching brass and jazzy organ shifts. Like a toddler in socially awkward situation, KEG say exactly what’s on their mind. In fact, ‘Sing Again’‘ might just be one long troll, both in subject and design. With its ear worm chorus (“I forgot to sing again”), Haddenham shows he can also really carry a great tune as well as a scream.

‘Elephant’ struts its art-punk in a confined space, more angular and articulated than a Rubik’s snake in the hands of an over-enthusiastic chimpanzee. Nothing makes sense in KEG’s world, and the existential paranoia starts to rub off in the second half of the EP. Highlight, ‘Kids’ is “a nice radio-friendly song about hating your offspring”, which takes us on a tour of funny but eye-rolling first-world problems and observations via Michael McIntyre’s Roadshow, and California Rolls and Buddha bowls. Extra kudos for being political, without… you know… the politics. Closer, ‘NPC’ captures the disorienting live atmosphere of a KEG show, mixing neuron noodling synths, waspish brass, funk bass and discordantly jazzy dispatches of guitar mayhem. Ultimately, just something weird that you can dance and shout along to.

Ignore the hype, give Girders a try and decide for yourself.

‘Girders’ is released on 2nd September via Alcopop! Records/BMG.


God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.