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coverpic flag US - California - Full Moon 129 - 04/02/07

Artichoke
Never mind the bollocks here's the Sex Pistols by Artichoke
Greeen Records

Never mind the bollocks... is one of the most iconic records of rock music. Imagine the entire album done in a quiet folk-rock way. Acoustic guitars, accordion, ukulele, trombone French horn, kazoo and all. The music collective Artichoke, run by one Timothy Sellers (musician, painter, photographer), presents a refreshing take on the ...Bollocks.

Artichoke were new to me till one day when this disc dumped into my (snail) mail box. Interesting, was my first thought. Interesting, indeed, the second, when reading the promo letter, finding the story of their 26 Scientists, Volume One Anning-Malthus album: a collection of (loosely biographical) songs, one scientist for each letter of the alphabet (including Albert Einstein, William T. Kelvin, Galileo Galilei, Charles R. Darwin and Marie Curie to name a few). Artichoke is now hard at work on a Volume Two cd of this project.

Back to ...Bollocks. It's a smashing album, and something quite different than the original middle finger pointing punk rock attitude. When "Holidays In The Sun" opens, you start scratching your head. What's this, then? And, I guess if not knowing the title of the album/song, you'd have a hard time recognizing the source. "Bodies" follows, and stands out as one of the best songs of the album. Done in a fragile, vulnerable way, sung by Ema Tuennerman. Brilliant! The beauty of the melody and the soft vocals are highly contrasted to the brute lyrics:
"She was a girl from Birmingham /She just had an abortion / She was case of insanity / Her name was Pauline, she lived in a tree / She was a no one who killed her baby..."

The rest of the songs follow mainly the pattern of the opening two, with a few exceptions. "Pretty Vacant" is, like "Holiday...", totally different. "No Feelings" sounds a bit like Violent Femmes. I don't like "Anarchy in the UK", which is done like some glammy new wave meets jazzy bossa-nova. Making everything quite cheesy. Besides that, I can only recommend Artichoke's ...Bollocks!

Copyright © 2007 Håvard Oppøyen e-mail address

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