In a decade where guitar-driven rock has pretty much drawn its last breath, Mother’s Cake are obstinately pushing ahead with their characteristic brand of pneumatic rock. Their second studio album “Love the Filth” is the most recent stop on their unstoppable glory ride, which took them through three years of heavy touring and the recording of a live album. Now the band has returned with a purple-pink monster that offers the listener another wild and exciting ride through a brave new world of boyish excitement and festive ephemera.
Throughout their three-year career, Mother’s Cake have always balanced on the tight line between vulgar and the sophisticated, and “Love the Filth” forms no exception on this rule. It all starts with the title, which was instantly off-putting, yet the Francis Bacon-type art work suggests that there is more behind the record than the “Talk Dirty to Me”-attitude that was typical for the American hard rock music of the eighties and nineties. In the same way, the music on “Love the Filth” is all glam and funk, but with a healthy dose of musical complexity, that makes the music both catchy and progressive at the same time.
RELEASE DATE: 05 June 2014 LABEL: Panta R&E
“Ecstacy” sees Yves Kremer dig up his best David Sylvian impersonation in shameless glorification of Japan’s “Adolescent Sex”, a grandiose album that contains a certain taste of the obnoxious, which will not appeal to everyone. However, the listener finds a counteracting element in the numerous little moments of affability that come in different styles and tastes and are spread throughout the album. Opening track “Prelude” is an engulfing piece of jazz that juxtaposes nicely with the subsequent title track. “Solar Wind” is a piece of spaghetti western guitar psychedelia that functions as the album’s breather, while the ending notes of “Insanity” are a wonderful piece of laid-back funk, that make crave for a change in creative direction in the band’s work.
Musically, “Love the Filth” is situated closer to “Off the Beaten Track” than to their debut “Creation’s Finest”, which shows that Mother’s Cake are definitely able to develop their sound and grow up. This album sees the band take their tremendous live energy into the studio on order to let it work its magic in a more controlled environment. The music is as rich in breakdowns and guitar solos as ever, but the album is short, making me feel like some tracks are a little dense. Mother’s Cake are masters in making songs switch lanes as well as in the use of soft-loud dynamics, yet on “Love the Filth” these variations in heaviness and tempo occasionally follow a bit to soon on each other, making the music sound short-winded. It’s hard to appreciate the intricate songwriting on this album when you’re listening to the music while doing something else. However, this again elevates “Love the Filth” high above the average modern rock album, and – while leaving the listener short on breath – it gives rock music the air and momentum to get it through another decade.