Jarvis Cocker - Further Complications - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Jarvis Cocker - Further Complications

by Rich Morris Rating:10 Release Date:

"Further Complications" is an ugly bugger - it's a garrulous, punch-drunk piss artist, ham-fistedly trying to get itself in with the attractive host of the party it's just gatecrashed and vainly hoping she won't mind its graying hair and beer breath. It's a disconcerting work, especially coming from our Jarv, a man who has become as synonymous with the words 'arch' and 'wit' as he has with the words 'beanpole' and 'arse-waggle'. But this album has two not insubstantial things going for it: firstly, it's loads of fun. Secondly - and put simply -it rocks.

The latter is down to the granite-hard, no-frills production of Steve Albini and the beefed up rock provided by Cocker's band, which includes old Pulp mucker Steve Mackey. The fun comes from what Cocker does on top of this. Always a self-aware chap, Jarv knows how ridiculous his spindly presence is on such muscular and macho fare and so he subverts proceedings by presenting us with his Confessions of a Middle-aged Miscreant, lampooning and celebrating his shortcomings, be they physical ('Leftovers'), psychological ('I Never Said I Was Deep') or marital (Homewrecker!'). The album is zinging with classic Cockerisms: 'I met her in the museum of paleontology/ and I make no bones about it' he drawls on 'Leftovers', while on the title track he barks 'In the beginning there was nothing/ to be honest, that suited me just fine'.

Best of all is 8 minute-plus closer 'You're in My Eyes (Discosong)', which has Jarvis achieving an apex of pathos by murmuring about mistaking an eye floater for his lost lover over droning guitar sludge and a sample of Italo disco classic 'Rolling Down the Hills' by Glass Candy. Ever wondered what a disco song sung by Jarvis Cocker and produced by Steve Albini would sound like? Well, now we know - amazing.

It's been a while coming, but "Further Complications" sees Jarvis reclaiming the status of national treasure, just maybe not one you'd want to take round your mum's for tea. He'd probably see it as a chance to get his leg over.

Best tracks: 'Leftovers', 'I Never Said I Was Deep', 'You're in My Eyes (Discosong)'

Richard Morris

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