The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster – Blood and Fire
Sometimes it must be easier for a band that starts out average. Spare a thought for The Eighties Matchbox B-Line Disaster who, from the word go, have utterly kicked the shit out of the competition with two brilliant albums, some great singles, heaps of charisma and an irrefutable sense of musical identity.
Surely it’s a real worry that one day they're bound to release a disappointing record. Well this isn't it. Blood and Fire is just as swashbuckling as its name suggests. It skilfully combines elements of the gothic cabaret honed on The Royal Society with the feral psychobilly of their debut.
Quite aside from hooky lead single Love Turns To Hate, there are numerous outstanding moments including the grizzly surf of So Long Good Night, the propulsive tuneful momentum of Homemade and the outright nastiness of Monsieur Cutts. Guy McKnight's vocals are as idiosyncratic and infectious as ever and being dropped by Island seems to have left no scars. [Chris Cusack]