By Matt Pais
RedEye Sound Board
November 5, 2012
It would be easy to be scared off by Future of the Left, the aggressive Welsh rockers who released their third lyrically precise and musically explosive album “The Plot Against Common Sense” earlier this year.
Singer Andy Falkous rarely goes for long without tiptoeing (or, more accurately, fully leaping) into a scream. Both on record and at Monday’s show at Bottom Lounge, the band possesses a thickness driven by snarling guitars and some of the hardest basslines you’ll hear on either side of the pond.
Bring an open-mind, of course, and Future of the Left delivers constant rewards, showcased throughout the group’s too-short 50-minute set. Sampling equally from all three records—the best of which is almost undeniably “Travels with Myself and Another”—Falkous and co. pummeled through “Arming Eritrea,” “Small Bones Small Bodies,” “Sheena Is a T-shirt Salesman” and more with a force that never covered up the band’s underlying, heavy tunefulness. Locked in like an iron gate, the quartet makes hard-edged rock sexy and even funky, swaggering through “Failed Olympic Bid” with the focused intensity of the rare person who can remain articulate and eloquent while angry.
Falkous’ chatter was sparse but snappy as ever, blending self-deprecation and wicked smarts and noting that the queen’s jubilee is not as successful as the Olympics “seeing as it didn’t take place in 1746.” He may do more yelling than you prefer, but he’s always tapped into something worth yelling about, particularly on the hilariously spot-on skewering of terrible sequels, “Robocop 4—[Bleep] Robocop,” on which he dryly barks, “If Michael Bay wants a bigger house, let’s help him.”
Bad movies and bad bands come around all too often, offering progressively less; for particular tastes, Future of the Left is exactly the right kind of more.
Watch Matt on “You & Me This Morning,” Friday at 6:55 a.m. on WCIU, the U
Want more? Discuss this article and others on RedEye's Facebook page.
Copyright © 2013 Chicago Tribune Company, LLC