I think, given their own referencing of it, that SQUID might quite like the fact that we described them as “baffling” a few weeks ago on the 6Music show. But then “baffling” – on many occasions – is a good thing. And Squid are a great thing. They have a big, collective musical brain. You can hear it throbbing when they play live.
Following on from last year’s Speedy Wunderground single ‘The Dial’ (an early Gang Of Four style, spacious piece of punk-funk, jagged, disciplined and beautifully structured to give an indication of their use of light and dark textures), comes this excitable new record.
‘Houseplants’ is already one of the highlights of their live set, which is saying something, because there’s a lot to choose from. Having seen the Brighton band twice this year, I can vouch for the fact that live, they’re a juggernaut of curveballs on a less than straight A-road. They know where they’re going, but we don’t know which way they’re going to get there).
This one sounds agitated and exasperated – the result of a future image which is like an itch they can’t scratch (it’s based on “being able to afford a house and not having to have beans on toast for the week leading up to payday. Pessimistically, I don’t see that future happening, but I still catch myself every now and again thinking it could“).
‘Houseplants’ itself though, IS the future.