Tuesday 24 September 2013

Oum Shatt - Power to the Women of the Morning Shift EP

EP review by kev@thesoundofconfusion.co.uk

They say: " a radically pure and minimal form of rock'n'roll, with Arabic references". We say: a slightly minimal take on post-punk and new-wave with a nod to Sparks. And Arabic references. German trio Oum Shatt have all been members of other groups in the past, so they have experience, but this is their first EP under this guise and was initially given a digital release at the end of August. From September 26th you'll be able to pick it up on limited vinyl too. Wondering what Oum Shatt translates as? Yeah, so are we. They teasingly say that the press release will tell us. Well, it tells us that "oum" means "mother", and despite some time fiddling about with translations websites, the best we can find is that "shatt" means "shatt". Which seems a bit odd, but they're an odd band.

The title-track is partly the sound of rockabilly reaching either Central America or Arabia and then converging with some European minimalist innovators from the post-punk era. It's certainly different, but different in a good way. With something so unusual it will, naturally, not be to everyone's taste, but put your experimental ears on and it's an interesting hybrid. Even more minimal is the simple plucked electric guitar and ticking beat of 'Silent Girl. It might not be overly indulgent, but the many layers (and they definitely bring in a few more exotic sounds to this tune) mean that it's pretty accessible and another fine effort. You could probably convince a few people that 'Hot Hot Cold Cold' is a lost Sparks track, one they didn't release as the guitar sounded too much like it was from a Western adventure movie, but it's a highlight. Lastly there's 'Madame O. (Black Friday)' which follows suit with the minimal beats and guitar but adds more of an atmosphere and lyrics that could be interpreted as being quite sinister. They're a unique proposition, that's for sure.

Oum Shatt's website

Stream or buy the EP

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