Release Date: Oct 6, 2009
Record label: Fat Cat
Genre(s): Rock, Alternative, Live
You can understand [a]Brakes[/a]’ decision to release a live album, since their brief history has beena tale of patchy albums and ace shows. Recorded at Brighton’s Concorde 2 and Cologne’s Luxor, this has 20 tracks of their unique brand of short, sharp oddball-punk, plus what sounds like six people clapping in-between. [b]‘Pick Up The Phone’[/b] and [b]‘Hi How Are You’[/b] are amusing bursts of irritation, but [b]‘I Can’t Stand To Stand Beside You’[/b] and [b]‘What’s In It For Me’[/b] stand out, lost classics that could have snuck on to [a]The Who[/a]’s [b]‘Live At Leeds’[/b] (well, almost).
The going rate to get into a Brakes concert-- Stateside anyhow, where they're known as BrakesBrakesBrakes-- is within a coupla bucks of what you might pay for the Brighton foursome's new live set, Rock Is Dodelijk. In an era when everything's preserved for posterity within a few minutes of it happening, the live album seems a particularly antiquated artifact, despite the prevalence of the things in the marketplace (this is, after all, not the only live record Pitchfork is reviewing today). Rock in Dodelijk, however, avoids a lot of what makes the live album seem superfluous, thanks to the band's breathless, ripchord performance and the set's searing up-front sound.
Compiled from an August 2008 show in the UK and a May 2009 show in Germany, this digital-only live album from Brighton, England’s Brakesbrakesbrakes (the repetition being only for the benefit of their U.S. audiences, as we apparently have our own Brakes out of Philadelphia) captures a wildly energetic set of songs spanning a period in which the band was recording and releasing their latest studio album, Touchdown. The set on Rock Is Dodelijk, which contains a scant three numbers from that record (though two different versions of the riff-centric “Hey Hey”), favors their more rollicking material, playing out something like a best-of sampler of their music to date.