Cardiff’s Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard don’t care too much about what other people think, we’d presume. They’ve labelled their new release ‘The Non-Stop’, all ten tracks of it, as an EP not a debut album, and within it are songs called ‘John Lennon Is My Jesus Christ’ and ‘Double Denim Hop’ – there’s no posturing here.
“Just be yourself, but be sure to put on a show, and show everybody else how much you can be yourself,” they sing on the appropriately-named ‘Hollywood Actors’, tearing down pseudo-sincerity while being firmly, well, themselves. Following a series of hype-building singles and a lauded live show, ’The Non-Stop’ paints the fullest picture yet of a band taking the sounds of rock’n’roll’s decades past, but flipping its mission statement on its head.
Across the EP, the band dip their toe into the classic rock of AC/DC and the weirder, more frenetic edges of King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, as well as clearly taking cues from their countrymen Super Furry Animals. While they’re not bringing anything musically innovative to the table, they’ve re-packaged the sounds in a way that feels distinctly 21st Century. It’s extremely good fun and presented without pretence – and that feels like enough.
It’s not all one pace on the record – things are stripped back to just an acoustic guitar for ‘Long Day/Free Day’ – but everything is coated in a bluesy, psychedelic feeling. Highlights come on ‘What Is Hate?’, a blues rock stomper aided by production that feels wonderfully big and bright, and the predictably Beatles-like ‘John Lennon Is My Jesus Christ’.
On the jangly album highlight, vocalist Tom Rees pays tribute to his rock’n’roll heroes – “David Bowie is my Henry Ford,” he sings over handclaps and backing vocal “woo”s, making it feel like a drunken dive bar rendition, thrown out after a spin of ‘Heroes’. It’s an endearingly earnest love letter to the decades of rock music that have given the Cardiff youngsters life, and across ‘The Non-Stop’, they proceed to have a hell of a lot of fun packaging up the ingredients left behind. Much like The Lemon Twigs’ brash appropriation of that decade’s more outlandish faces, Rees has enough charisma to keep the whole moving and grooving.
Buzzard Buzzard Buzzard aren’t the sound of a ‘70s rock revival, just millennial kids discovering iconic records from half a century ago, having their minds blown, starting a band and plugging in – it’s fun, intoxicating and powered by pure feeling.
Release date: July 10
Release label: Communion