Classic Rock

Ezra Furman

Twelve Nudes

- mark Beaumont

Bella Union The glorious howl of humanity going to the dogs.

If you’re not looking at 2019 and stifling a scream, you’re not looking hard enough. Having made his arch, considered comment on America’s millennial mayhem with last year’s superb Transangel­ic Exodus, on this eighth album Chicago alt.pop malcontent Ezra Furman can bite his tongue no longer. “More animal than intellectu­al,” he calls his no-fi, new-wave Jay Reatard punk record Twelve Nudes, blasted out fast and drunk in Oakland, and it’s certainly a howl as savage and desperate as the age. Religion, gender identity, abusive politician­s and existentia­l angst – Ezra bingo, basically - entwined into a primal gutter punk roar.

‘Trans power!’ Furman bawls over one minute of desiccated garage punk called Blown; it’s the album’s most ruined moment but things don’t get much glossier. Trauma laser-focuses the frustratio­n with wealth inequality that drives people to take hammers to bank windows, Rated R Crusaders attempts to solve the Israel/Palestine conflict in two minutes of gonzoid buzzpunk. There’s hopelessne­ss amid the anger: the sublime Transition From Nowhere To Nowhere laments our communal apathy in the face of relentless online inhumanity. On the flip-side, the righteous Evening Prayer Aka Justice acts as a generation­al call to action: ‘The kids are just getting started… participat­e in the fight now for a creed you can truly believe.’ It’s music to glue your arse to a Barclays to. ■■■■■■■■■■

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