I’m not sure what real and what's not with The Ladywell Lout. Their bio says at least one of them was raised in south central L.A. and migrated to the UK in 2003 to escape the hood. Ok - so where did the Scottish accent that is all over their debut album Gadgies and Radges come from. Well, maybe that’s the other half of the duo? The point I'm getting at is that the group is irreverent about their music, which is also evident in their songs titles.
I had myself a chuckle when I was reading their tracks on Spotify and saw titles such as “Phil Collins got a drum kit when he was 5” and “85% of greyhounds are depressed.” The irreverence comes across in the actual music as well as the titles, which ends up being one of the most attractive aspects about the band. They compose lo-fi electronic music that flirts and explores different facets of the genre. The duo isn't afraid to bust out a 4/4 dance beat or get heavy with melancholy and white noise.
When I first heard the vocals I have to admit I wasn’t into it. The vocalist’s Scottish accent was very thick and he sounded like he was barely trying which I’m pretty sure was intentional. After about my third time through the album I had changed my mind. It slowly grew on me and I starting appreciating his stoic delivery. That being said, his vocals could have used better compression techniques and EQ to fit better into the mix.
The album starts with “Ramp It Up For Sleep,” which revolves around bell like synth effects, more synths and vocals. It’s a fairly minimal song and I couldn't understand what the vocalist was saying besides “big exhale.” The song had a lo-fi cheesy allure similar that of Your Blues by Destroyer.
“Trancetasticminimalplastic (Alex Salmond Mix)” contains a bumpin 4/4 house beat, shards of white noise and enough changes to keep things interesting. It’s a solid tune all around, which displays some of the band’s skills in the studio. ”Phil Collins got a drum kit when he was 5” is the first song that creates a symbiotic relationship between electronic and organic instruments. While is only a little over 2 minutes long, it is b one of the most infectious tracks on the album.
“Gonny come here Danielle” is a haunting track that revolves around a field recording of a conversation and dark atmospheric elements. The track is a testament to the duo’s willingness to explore different soundscapes. Gadgies and Radges isn’t exactly an accessible album. It takes a bit of patience to appreciate the songs but if you are willing to put the effort in you should be rewarded.
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