Wasps vs Noise, 2nd Single Karaoke Queen
More news on the searing social comment front…
…in the form of the second collaboration between Wasps vs Humans (aka punk poet Carl Plover) and Cork audio-visual production duo Eat My Noise.
‘Karaoke Queen’ features some characteristic (signature even) and unforgettable punchlines from Plover (my own faves would have to be “plastic tits for mechanics to wank over” and “normality follows her like gangrene” – check the full lyrics which are reprinted with kind permission below).
Meanwhile, the twitchy dub breakbeat rhythm neatly undercuts the commentary – a dream of X Factor-style triumph gone wrong to the power of cheap and nasty rumpy-pumpy in the back of a Cortina.
It’s a highly effective soundtrack, oozing menace amid the black synth gurgles but poignant too at its heart.
The second track ‘A candle burns’ creates more of a widescreen feel – the lovechild of Ken Loach and Terence Malick, perhaps – as desolation and decay are backgrounded by haunting strings. Plover’s delivery is slower, more deliberate, the overall effect movingly poetic. It’s a testament to the strength of his material that it’s capable of accommodating such vastly differing musical arrangements, which themselves are sympathetic and brilliantly evocative.
“When I grow up mummy, what will I do
Will I be on TV, looked at from every angle with a TV crew.
Upside down, spin me round
I’ll do anything, just make me a star
Anything goes, secret filming; I’ll take off my clothes.
Makeup artists, posters, trailers,
I don’t want to be a postman; he’s not in the paper
No one wants to, see him later
Lying on a beach, with my stapled belly and my plastic tits
For mechanics to wank over
Pump up my lips, cut up my face, re mortgage my house, sell your new car, please please make me a star
Beauty pageants, bulimia, with ice cream,
Size zero girls with no waste, rib cages, and faded jeans
Expectations running high for Karaoke queen. The Promised Land turned out to be a car park, unprotected sex in the back of a Ford Cortina.
Said he was an agent, works for Littlewoods catalogues
Karaoke Queens dreams collapse, in heap. The TV made us believe, for two pounds a minute, ask the person who pays the bill, please.
No answers on a postcard anymore, no 15 minutes, no flash bulbs, no limos, just Discount cabs, no red carpets, just wine stains.
Karaoke queen downs another white wine and soda,
Hits the dance floor and pretends she’s Britney Spears.
She closes her eyes, she can hear the crowd.
Normality follows her, like gangrene.
Another dream runs out of oxygen and drops off.
Society’s abnormal expectations claim… another… victim.”
The Wasps Vs. Humans and Eat My Noise collaboration is back with a new single, Karaoke Queen, another raw, visceral and brutally poignant release.
Following on from The Killing of Celebrity Culture, this is the second single in their series of three, containing two tracks showcasing hard line social commentary woven into an electronic soundscape.
The title track Karaoke Queen is true to life; another brilliant evocative electronic slam poem that Wasps Vs. Noise do so well. It will leave you shattered by its brash honesty and relentless beat; a challenge to social norms and the expectations of beauty and fame.
The B side – A Candle Burns approaches with a melodic feel but is no less powerful. Built on the live sampling of orchestrated violins, only Wasps Vs. Noise could degrade politicians so effectively in what is essentially a love poem. If Karaoke Queen is a damning of society, A Candle Burns brings out the joy on offer, making these two tracks a sublime combination.
Wasps Vs. Humans (a.k.a Carl Antony Plover) is a spoken word poet with keen social observations who has supported the likes of The Fall, John Cooper Clarke, Scroobius Pip, Christy Moore & Jinx Lennon. Eat My Noise are electronic producers/composers, Peter Power and Dave Duffy, who make music for everything – including short film, theatre and dance, as well as large scale musical performances under their own name.
This collaboration is truly unique; dark, gritty and wonderfully satirical. In a world where it can be hard to focus on one thing at a time – this single will make you question, think and dance at the same time.