As If

!!! As If

Six albums in, dance-punk pioneers !!! have refined their sound to the
point that it almost always hits the bullseye.

Nic Offer & band have grown so adept at welding dancefloor dynamics to a rich strain of funk and leftfield pop that excellence is pretty much expected at this point.

But ‘As If’ goes even further; a warm, engrossing record that brings the beats and the smarts, it’s the group’s most enveloping collection of songs yet.

Even the cover image of a monkey atop a pile of bananas is perfectly apt; ‘As If’ transports you to a daytime beach disco on a tropical island.

!!!’s love of early ’90s house shines through here, and the motifs of that time wiry guitar licks, organic synths, bouncy drums – are lovingly applied throughout.

This lends the music a comforting familiarity, but it’s done with a freshness and zest that avoids the nostalgia trap.

Even channelling Studio 54-esque soul-funk (‘Freedom! ’15’) sounds very of
the moment, revealing a band possessing that rare ability to thrill with their own interpretation of past glories.

“But the only way, at least for the three of us, to stay sane and keep track
of what we’re doing and explain to each other how we want things to be is
to keep talking,

because there are so many choices at every moment of crafting each song,” he says.

“There are so many choices in every moment of playing live in front of people, and even in every moment like this,” he says, gesturing at the Dictaphone.

It’s not spoken like a confession, but somehow feels like it. On record, and
on stage,

Wand are feral, disconnected from reality, gloriously runaway and starry-eyed; to achieve that process day to day, however, their approach is,
apparently, almost the reverse.

Some bands, believe it or not, talk when you least expect.

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