Tough and gritty emotionally charged music that straddles the line between Emo and New Wave and No Wave music. Alpha Cat releases music sporadically in the output mold of Jesus and the Mary Chain. You can wait a while for a new release, but it is always worth the wait artistically. A modern version NYC version of Kate Bush via punk comes into play when you look at the arc of this act’s career. The new album, Thatched Roof Glass House, is a contemplative unsettling affair for the listener that demands involvement. Lucky for us the catchy hooks and a beautiful sense of melody come to the fore.
This is most evident on the first radio single Mona Lisa in A Comic Book (Aquamarine Records), which achieves the duel feat of slight self-mockery and reverence for artistic creation as well. There seems to be much soul searching involved with the lyrics here. Tinged with admiration and disdain for consumerism and shallow envy, versus contempt and admiration over aesthetic looks, the song’s message resonates. The song descends into a darker plain when it gets revealed that all under the surface the iron hold of alcohol addiction and addiction to another human comes to light.
“He’s the president of his own four walls
he’s a masterwork in a paperback
she’s Mona Lisa in a comic book.
Chip away, make it fit, hit it a little bit harder
make it fit, chip away until there’s nothing left.
Pay your respects to the man inside the bottle
he’s doing the best that you’ll let him.
He’s a bright light, in a dark room
so nobody turns him on
she’s a slow fuse, in a tinder box”
Very affecting and challenging ideas to what is a bit of pure pop sunshine melodically and musically. Another intriguing song and melody reside in the title track Thatched Roof Glass House. There seems to be a charged atmosphere of life orientated opinions mixed with an undertone of politics that seems to be lurking in the background. All set off with the classic Hal Blaine drum figure there is an anthem-like quality to this song that seems to be strutting confidently in high heels, all around the speakers. Gutsy and challenging the whole of the 7 songs from Alpha Cat is a good listen for any serious music fan. Four stars out of five from me.