It’s been seven years since Liverpool post-punk experimentalists released their last album, but this year saw the release of Clinic’s eighth offering. Going by the curious title, Wheeltappers and Shunters, the record took is named after the the long-forgotten 1970’s ITV variety show The Wheeltappers and Shunters Social Club, a show which was compered by Bernard Manning, recreating the smoky, boozy atmosphere of Northern working men’s clubs for a sofa-bound audience. The band saw this as “a title befitting of what Clinic was looking to achieve with their eighth studio album: “a satirical take on British culture – both high and low”….”
The album was recorded last year in founding band member Hartley’s Liverpool studio, before they brought in Dilip Harris (King Krule, Sons Of Kemet, Mount Kimbie) to mix it. True to form the record has light-hearted, fun elements to it, but these are often laced with traces of menace, whilst nods to influences such as 13th Floor Elevators, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry and rockabilly echos through each track. Each song doesn’t stray far over the two minute mark, but these short-sharp bursts of punk-infused garage rock remain a flavoursome and hearty audio treat nonetheless.
Mirage has got a real nice slinky beat, one that winds itself around inside your head like satin worm as hushed vocals whisper breathy lines about the mirage of modern living…check it out above.