Monday, May 5, 2008

Charlene - No Fly

(SharkAttack!, 2000)

Uh oh. I’m leaving tomorrow for a vacation, and I can’t help noticing that dark omens are gathering all around me. Like the title of this single: “No Fly.” I’m supposed to fly at 6:00pm!! And late last night I heard – and enjoyed – the scary Bloodrock song “D.O.A.” for the first time. It’s about a plane crash!! And then this evening, I was invited to go see a screening of Ishtar at Anthology. That film was a famous ‘BOMB’!! Might a fiery death stand in the way of my quest to review every 7” I own? It seems a forgone conclusion, but stay tuned to Wednesday’s papers to find out for sure!

Until then, assume the worst and remember me the way I’d like to be remembered: Sitting on a bare mattress and reviewing the second Charlene single. Cuz it’s a killer, this one. “No Fly” is a thumping, crunching blisstrip, a track that startles with a near-radio-ready catchiness that nevertheless joyfully subverts itself with sudden bursts of feedback overtaking the twangy, rippling guitar lines. The vocals sound better than ever; they – and the song as a whole – are quite similar to Hopewell’s work, in fact, but even that pop-savvy band never produced such a flawless space/psych/whatever single as this, never found “No Fly’s” oughta-be-impossible balance between narcoticized and bouncy, moody and sunny. I mean, jeez, this thing’s gonna still be running through my head when that dang plane of mine goes down in flames over the Atlantic. Could definitely do worse than that!

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