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Album Review

Réalistes sounds like the aural equivalent of a herky-jerk tube ride across London, with clattering, garage-like tunes rollicking along before going underground for a sobering mind-the-gap ballad along the way. The album continues Comet Gain's torrid union of mod punk/soul-pop and garage-indie revisionism. Leader David Feck — an homage to Dennis Hopper's "check's in the mail" character from The River's Edge perhaps? — is now the only mainstay since the group formed in 1993. During the rest of the '90s, they were practically the house band at various clubs and, in some respects, not much has changed since then; in fact, the tambourine-and-Hammond-organ-powered "The Kids at the Club" could be the council pub set's next anthem, perfect for a sweat-soaked, hip-shakin' night on the tiles. "Movies," with its recurring boy-girl chorus ("Will you take me to the movies?/I'm feeling groovy"), is going to be a go-go charmer. On the title track, Feck sneers like an atonal Mark E. Smith of the Fall, while those up-the-neck pick-slides might have been ripped from any one of the Jam's better A-sides, circa 1978. Here and there, Réalistes might have benefited from another mixing session. "Don't Fall in Love if You Want to Die in Peace" is one example where the VU-meter spikes into the red, but somehow its weird tangle of swirly organ, echoey vocals, and over-modulated acoustic guitar fits the disc's purposefully ramshackle production by new drummer/"sound guru genius" M.J. "Woody" Taylor. Features guest appearances by Christopher Appelgren (of the Pattern/the PeeChees) on drums, Peter Momtchiloff (lap steel on "Carry on Living"), Anthony Miller (brass arrangement on "Labour"), Kathleen Hanna (Le Tigre, ex-Bikini Kill) contributing venomous riot grrrl vocals on "Ripped-Up Suit!," and the Aislers Set (handclaps).

Customer Reviews

Mod club rave-up action

I'm so glad I discovered this one. If you liked the Jam, you'll dig this. If you used to look forward to checking out those local, underground, unknown mod-punk bands that used to play late at night in dark alleyway clubs in your town (the one's you'd discover because of the pack of Vespas and Lambrettas parked outside), you'll love this.


Formed: 1992

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Led by guitarist and vocalist David Feck (aka David Bower and David Christian), Comet Gain are a British indie pop band whose music is a freewheeling, literate fusion of folk-rock, twee pop, garage rock, R&B, punk, and any number of points in between. The first edition of Comet Gain was formed in 1992; Feck initially conceived the group as a trio with bassist George Wright and drummer Phil Sutton, but the band truly found its sound the following year, when Jax Coombes replaced Wright on bass and...
Full Bio
Realistes!, Comet Gain
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Customer Ratings

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