Mstation Pop etc Commentary, Reviews Valid RSS pre Dec 04 reviews are here

Sat, 02 Jun 2007

Holding hands out the back: The Autons

Last September or so Mstation heard a track from the Autons called Snakes which really rocked along and had the sort of drive reminiscent of Punk but without the odious posturing and with quite a lot of musical skill. The song went along to get some very favourable mentions at the end of 06.

Since then there's been a record deal with Zip, an album release (right about now), and an album "repressing" on the strength of pre-orders, and some hopes at least of a European tour as they are popular in the lands beyond the Channel. They are from Portsmouth in the UK and have had supportive press there - which is all kind of nice. Also nice is that this is no pre-fab A&R wank package of pretty-pretties. Actually, I personally quite like pp's but there's no need for them to actually make a noise and most of them could do with stylist changes. But anyway, I should hasten to add, there's nothing bad looking about the Auton guys - they just don't have those tell-tale marketing department droppings around them.

So, you won't be surprised to find that the label isn't one of the mega's but I'm not going to beat up on them here: Breaking new bands is hard work even if you have a vision of the whole picture. Short-termism brought on by maximising shareholder's wealth often has the by-product of conservatism and so it's quite likely that this weeks new band from them is likely to actually be version 1034.1 of something else. But not always. Just mostly.

Not that the Autons are blazing a new trail but it is on a trail away from the usual stuff and it all has a refreshing immediacy about it despite holding hands out the back with forms that aren't commercial du jour. But that's what accessability is about, and the balance between this holding of hands and an artist's fevered futurism determines whether the punter shrugs his shoulders in complete perplexity or fixes a wide grin on his face right from the start.

With the Autons we have electro melded with something of the punk ethos especially in the urgency and phrasing of the vocalist. There'll be a few smiles around on June 4 when the album is released. (thunderfinger)

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