MCLUSKY My Pain And Sadness Is More Sad And Painful Than Yours (Fuzzbox)

Mclusky are a Welsh trio whose ambition is to become the loudest band in the world. The 73 seconds of their debut single "Joy" have already nabbed them an Independent Single of the Week award. Their first album takes a somewhat more leisurely gambol through 14 tracks, with provocative titles like "Whiteliberalonwhiteliberalaction" and "Rock Vs. Single Parents", and has already been reviewed less than glowingly by Kev in the last issue.

And so I thought it would have been by me, but for some reason, whilst playing it this evening, "My Pain And Sadness Is More Sad And Painful Than Yours" has undergone a staggering evolution from petulant, distorted brattiness to something akin to a junior member of the worshipful company of righteous noise rock albums (a select group which includes Manic Street Preachers' "The Holy Bible" and "Relationship Of Command" by At The Drive-In). Because Mclusky are almost brilliant. They have some wonderful melodic pop songs ("Flysmoke"), a wicked, caustic sense of humour (passing sideswipes take on the talentless Stereophonics and a certain Ms Morissette) and about as many buckets of distortion as the Red Book standard will let you put on a CD. If they could manage to bring all three together in the space of a single song and repeat the trick a dozen times Mclusky could be awesome and dangerous. Until that time, they're interesting, and should be watched closely. And is it a surprise to note the presence in the sleevenotes of the Jonathan King of lo-fi bedroom indie, James Barnard (also of No Wings Fins Or Fuselage, Sludgefeast, Inhaler and no doubt hundreds of other as-yet-undiscovered-by-me projects)?