Manchester’s Working for a Nuclear Free City is using the past tense when referring to their existence, even though their fourth official album, What Do People Do All Day?, was released earlier this year. Too bad, really, because they concoct some terrific and understated music, hypnotic yet hyper-aware.
“Bottle Rocket” is built upon just one note deftly anchored by a bumping bass line worthy of Bootsy Collins. Guitars attack in unexpected places, like a broom sweeping out the darkened corners of a movie theater, and beeping and squonking at random are semi-hidden sounds from vintage video arcade games. “Bottle Rocket” is a shining descendant of My Life in the Bush of Ghosts, except instead of spoken words of unrelated monologues, this features the inverted vocal melodies of Gary McClure. The rest of the album is just as tasty, serving up short gems from the Guided By Voices playbook along with gentle ambient songs that quickly flash with thunder and lightning to keep things interesting.
“Bottle Rocket” appears on What Do People Do All Day?, out now.
–Rick McNulty // host, Left of the Dial (Fridays, 7-11 p.m.), Rhythm & Blues (Saturdays, 7-11 p.m.)