Neutrals Bus Stop Nights EP

Static Shock
29th April 2022

Format Info

7" - limited blue vinyl

OK, there’s love at first sight and then there’s love at first hear. Actually they’re the same thing and we’ve fallen in love with Neutrals’ Bus Stop Nights. Glasgow emigres to San Francisco, Neutrals are helmed by Allan McNaughton who with his crew have somehow managed to beam back to 1979 to nail a sound somewhere between Television Personalities, that roughed up power-pop, vaguely moddy, that came out in now stupidly expensive 7″s with flimsy paper sleeves and a healthy dose of mid-90s Glasgow scruff (think Yummy Fur, Lungleg).

McNaughton’s vocal is so ingrained in North Lanarkshire drawl you can practically see the Campsies from his drawl, though melodicaly he’s no slacker. It’s just delivered with the right amount of panache and attitude over a sharp jangle guitar slash that sails down the Great Western Road between punk and the DIY indie pop.

Maybe it’s a nostalgia from Neutrals’ status as Brits/Scots abroad, but listening to Gary Borthwick Says you instantly smell chip fat that needs changed, maybe seagulls shitting on brutalist buildings in Cumbernauld and the intoxicating joy of growing up excited about life under perpetual grey skies. Pressures Of Life has hyperactive guitar chords slashing across a down-and-out chorus that’s just pissed off enough to sound lovingly petulant. Closer New Town Dream definitely has the nostalgic thing, like, are New Towns even New Towns anymore? Either way, the lyrical flow is so rich in late detail it makes you sad for all those weeds growing between the concrete, Iceland before it was re-branded, high rise towers, the result reminds us quite heavily of things like label mates Hygiene, who of course themselves are heavily indebted to the failed town planning and decaying industrial architecture of this fading empire.

So yeah, love at first hear.

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