Monday, July 21, 2008

Review: CSS "Donkey"

It's been two years since five true rebels from São Paolo stepped onto stages and told us how much they suck, immediately after which we were told to lick a woman named Lovefoxxx's art tit and to suck her art hole. These kids didn't seem like they were too tired of being sexy, but whatever they were, they certainly weren't afraid.

Since then, the members of Brazilian outfit CSS have been stunning listeners worldwide with their unabashed brand of electro-- one that made them pretty damn hard to forget. Fans were wanting more, fast, and in early 2008, CSS listened. CSS gave us a song called "Rat is Dead (Rage)", which was immediately different sounding. And upon listen of the song, you notice it's not a misnomer-- Lovefoxxx sounds angrier than ever, and for a band whose subject matter has usually varied from Paris Hilton to getting drunk, lyrics discussing a woman's abusive relationship are definitely different. CSS were back, and like every good band, they wanted us to be sure they weren't doing the same thing twice. With a new bandmate, CSS seemed like they were ready to grow up. Well... not that fast.
Upon the release of Donkey, CSS psyches us again by opening with another song about getting drunk ("Jager Yoga"), and A large portion of the less-structured in-your-face electro has died down, having been replaced by stabler rhythms and guitar-- but the spontaneity isn't gone. The albums more hard-rockin', but beats still surprise you. And that brash weirdness that made fans love them isn't gone either-- I mean, come on, they have a song called "Let's Reggae All Night" (whose sound definitely shows similar tones to the band's funky friends New Young Pony Club). But then again, the album also features songs like "Give Up" and "How I Became Paranoid". The band touches on very real matters, like sexual frustration ("Beautiful Song"); wanting to escape ("Left Behind"); wanting to be loved, no matter what it'd require ("I Fly") and of course, growing up.
One listen to Donkey makes it evident how much this album seems to be about that pivotal transition from reckless youth into true adulthood. You still go out and get drunk, but you've gotta be careful with your money so you can pay rent. You've gotta be more careful about everything. There's pressure to settle down, to grow up. Things get lonely and, worst of all, very boring. The kids in CSS just don't seem like people who get bored. So instead of getting bored in this transition, they sat and thought. It's a time when you've got to ask yourself a lot of questions, and the passage of time increases the pressure to come up with answers fast.
But the group seems to be handling this just fine. Thanks to those inevitable questions our heroes tackled, CSS is ready to show the world that they really are a substantial band, and they, too, can be taken seriously-- and make us dance at the same time.
Now that's talent.

Donkey hits the UK today and crosses our side of the Atlantic tomorrow.
As promised, get a full listen now on their MySpace until then.


Mz.Sullivan said...

Thanks Lolitahazed! The tee tip is greatly appreciated!


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