Fat White Family – Songs For Our Mothers

Brixton born Fat White Family said themselves in a press release, under their own label Without Consent, that ‘some people will call Songs For Our Mothers the most unpleasant album of the year, if not of their entire generation’. Whilst I wouldn’t go this far, the album is certainly ugly, with jagged twists and turns, and funeral sounding undertones. It definitely has the punk attitude from their first album Champagne Holocaust, but has improved in production and sounds unique.

This album feels as closely knit to the crazy drug-infused live show as they can get

This album feels as closely knit to the crazy drug-infused live show as they can get, something they have always struggled to express on record. The single ‘Whitest Boy on the Beach’ has a Euro-disco sound about it and is one of the best songs on the album. ‘Hits Hits Hits’ and freaky sounding ‘Love is The Crack’ are also stand-outs. Its hard to understand what the lyrics are trying to do, often repulsive. With titles ‘Lebrensraum’, you are often left wondering what Fat White Family are trying to say with their ironic eye catching headlines.

As much as they are loud about their left-wing political standpoint in interviews and on stage, expressing their hatred for the gentrification of London and the Tories, they never fully transgress this well through their lyrics. This might be because they are the archetypal all-male, white, punk band offending who they want because they will never be affected by the offence they cause.

As much as Fat White Family makes me feel hugely uncomfortable, I can’t help but really like the sound of this album. Often compared to The Velvet Underground and Iggy Pop, Fat White Family as individuals are as much of an entertainment and confusion as their music is.

Sarah-Kate O’Hare

3.5/5

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