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a second, or ten years later
I Shot The Deputy
By Theo Graham-Brown

At the beginning of the year The Sailplanes ditched all but one of their songs, wrote an entirely new set and proceeded to play it as often as they could. The week we put them on at RoTa I’d already seen them twice in the preceding seven days and that set didn’t get tired. So when I was handed their latest CD, essentially a studio version of those eight tracks, I was eager to put it on; it’s rarely been off my daily Winamp playlist.

Apart from some extra violin and viola on three of the tracks this sounds to be a straight live recording from the band and they’re certainly a band that can get away with the ‘Shellac’ approach to recording, keeping it live. Yola’s incredibly fast and accurate drumming ideas lock all the songs down, while the two guitars keep to very different sounds: Tim’s is scratchy, metallic and cutting while Stacey’s is a deep, woody counterpoint.

All the songs here are nice and short, quick little stabs of sound, mostly wild and noisy but with moments of calm. We’re not talking about a clichéd quiet-loud structure but close to Sonic Youth’s style of sonic exploration. Probably the biggest difference from the live experience are the vocals, always the first casualty of a loud gig, which now come through big and warm, allowing me to finally pick out the lyrics.

A note should be made about packaging too: this isn’t a cheap CDR knocked out from a computer, but a proper produced disc, complete with an eight-page booklet of great artwork. Given the band are selling it for only £4 including postage and packing from their website, you should pick this up immediately.