Tuesday, September 16

CSS- 'Donkey'

. Tuesday, September 16

July 21st

Yes that’s right CSS actually managed to find time to record a new album in between the five million UK tours and infinite festivals they played last year. ‘Donkey’ is the second effort from everyone’s favourite Brazilian disco party band and we’re sorry to join the hordes in exclaiming this but it really is as underwhelming as their debut was exhilarating.

It would be unfair to spend too much time comparing this album to the bands first appearance as CSS are a completely different band now to the sparkly catsuited troupe of 2007. Gone are ‘carbon footprint conscious’ band members, the charming broken English and the naivety. Where once the band seemed a bundle of unrestrained energy and excitement they now come across controlled and subdued. Perhaps this is due to the album being distributed via Warners and the subsequent need for a more ‘rounded’ album or maybe, and more likely, it’s that the past year of CSS’s short life has matured them as people and musicians. Whether this is for good or bad however remains to be seen.

The album kicks off with ‘Jager Yoga’ an instrumental that seems really pointless in its position as album opener. Half way through ‘Donkey’ this may have made sense as to break up some of the more similar tracks but at the beginning it simply instils a state of ennui in the listener before we have even heard Lovefoxx open her mouth. Much better however is the Pixies esque ‘Rat Is Dead (Rage)’ that sees CSS exercising demons and kicking arses for three solid minutes, one of the best songs in CSS’s arsenal.

The problem with ‘Donkey’ besides the critics dream title is that it simply feels like a case of ‘Will this do?’, the musical equivalent of the essay done one day before submission. It’s by no means presumptuous to say that ‘Give Up’ and ‘How I Became Paranoid’ would not even have made it as B-Sides to the first albums singles.

There are positives to gleam from here though. ‘Move’ has a perfect Summer groove to it whilst ‘I Fly’ is the first indication CSS are still a bit deranged- placingLovefoxx in the role of a blue bottle trying to land in her boyfriends mouth. Charmingly bonkers.

Whilst earlier in this review we stated it would be unfair to compare ‘Donkey’ with the bands eponymous debut this reviewer put the earlier album on after listening to ‘Donkey’ and the differences are staggering. Whereas as CSS mk.1 were reminiscent of Riot Grrl, dirty electro and the very best pop music CSS 2008 simply seem jaded and tired. With a crazy work ethic and fun live show it’s unlikely CSS’s star will fall but they need to make sure album number 3 is brought to us via injections of sugar, abandon and fun.

'Left Behind'



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