08 luglio 2016

Due voci, due contrabbassi, misurati svolazzi di tastiere e una ritmica elastica e solidissima. Con il loro secondo album i cinque Phall Fatale - Joana Aderi, Joy Frempong, Daniel Sailer, John Edwards e Fredy Studer - confermano l'efficacia del loro mix bipolare di pop e avanguardia, di acustica ed elettronica, di canzone e improvvisazione: Moonlit Bang Bang, per SlowFoot Records.

There aren’t many records that call to mind The Slits, CocoRosie, Portishead, Donkey Monkey, Micachu and the Shapes, and The Thing featuring Neneh Cherry. The second album by Phall Fatale shouldn’t really work: to be post-punk in spirit whilst displaying such obvious virtuosity seems a contradiction. But Moonlit Bang Bang is extraordinary precisely because of this unusual collision of technique and tearing it up. As distorted and abrasive at certain moments as it is fragile and subtle at others, the record succeeds in channeling avant-garde improvisation into catchy, compact song form. Maybe that’s what happens if your collective influences include Nina Simone, Jimi Hendrix, Iannis Xenakis and Albert Ayler. It isn’t easy to say where it ends up. Contemporary post-punk? Avant pop? Leftfield vocal jazz, of a kind that features no brass – or even, in the commonly understood sense, solos? A kind of alt R’n’B that makes alt R’n’B sound like Rihanna? The band themselves see the record as contemporary pop – but a kind of pop that draws heavily on improvisation, and which is interspersed with ‘hardcore packets of groove and spoken word’.