One of my favourite guitar bands of the moment, Fucked Up bring out the rejuvenated teenage boy spirit in me. taking what I loved about hard core punk rock and pushing back its barriers in pretty much every dimension.
I would describe Fucked Up as being a bit of jammed up mixture melding together Sonic youths guitars welded with dead Kennedies style vibe in the vocals. Ultimately for me they generate an excitement I havent really heard in a while.
I mean from the off they dont really reside easily within the typical confides of a hardcore band, I mean they all look like they have just walked out of a variety of 80s supper geek comics or fanzines.
Hailing from Torronto, Canada, they have brought a in the whole a new wave of experimentation within the asthetics of hardcore punk rock music. I mean there are obvious nods to what bands like Black Flag, Cro Mags and the Dead kennedies. but also sprinkling the seeds of Prog into the mix.
It is almost like as if they have created their own blueprint by mixing together the old school hardcore ethics and sounds that I have listed, with Cardiacs willing playfulness in pushing the boundaries with elements of My Bloody Valentine style guitars.
Another thing that sets them apart some what from some of the hardcore scene some what is their live performances, there is a certain amount of bare chested anger, where father Damian is intent on spreading love. He is a buldging tour de force of pure joy, as he amerces himself with every audience, trying to high five and hug every last person in the audience.
The first time I saw them live was at Glastonbury festival in 2009. It was a Friday afternoon about 1.30ish sweltering heat. It was one of those shows that was utterly euphoric moments at festival, where this was the perfect kick up the jaxxie that Glastonbury really needed. This was partly because how tight the band were as a unit and how Father Damien engaged with the audience
He will literally try and hug the entire audience, I have received hugs from him a number of times, it like having hugs from a sweaty Grizzly bear. Live they are a complete whirlwind of noise, where as on the record they are a little more redefind with sparkles of melody.
Their last album David Comes to Life was a punk rock opera spanning 18 tracks and nearly 2 hours in length. Their second album The Chemistry of Common Life won the Polaris Prize (Canada’s answer to the Mercury Awards) beating Arcade Fire in the process, this for me says something about their adventurous song writing ability
Their latest single is a part of what some call the Zodiac series, ie they pretty much write and record a single on the Chinese new year, previously they have released The Year of The Pig, The Year of the Rat and The Year of The Ox. Their latest single Year of the tiger is magnificent in its 15 and a half mins, with guest vocals from Legendary Canadian film director Jim Jarmusch and Duchess Says singer Annie-Claud Deschenes.