Somnambule - Writing About Music

Out Hud ~ Let Us Never Speak Of It Again

Out Hud are the new spandex. Out Hud are the new grey. They’re the floppy fringe brushed out of your eyes just in time to let the spring sunshine blind you. They’re the song humming around your head. They’re a lot of fun.

Out Hud are the choppy strumming on a million Haircut One Hundred singles. They’re Martin Fry’s sharp intake of breath. They’re the echoing reverb on Unknown Pleasures. Out Hud are the tsk tsk of Dreaming Of Me. They’re the twanging of Hooky’s lowslung bass. They’re the peppy bounce of Wordy Rappinghood. They’re lots of things this reviewer doesn’t know anything about at all. They’re homemade, wrapped up in tissue and placed carefully in a snug-fit tupperware container. They’re the bright red and white cheesecloth pattern on a big skirt. They’re skipping and earnest (preferably at the same time).

Out Hud’s images have been altered using sand and glue. At times they might be the ghost of The Slits, but they probably aren’t. Everybody keeps scrapbooks whether made of paper and card or the sparking of the synapses - pieces of this, fragments of that and wisps of the other – all threaded together to make your very own sense of a flow which – with a dash of zeal, good fortune and skill – has every chance of triggering others’ enthusiasm. I’m seeing wide-brimmed hats and frizzy hair. And I can see the outline of the girl on the Voodoo Ray video and a crowd of others, all of them dancing enthusiastically both in memory and in the present time, perhaps – hopefully - even onwards into the future.

Ultimately, it’s the sense of sincere enthusiasm, apparent lack of calculation, gloriously messy sound cobbled out of a multiplicity of ‘80s and ‘90s styles ranging between original new wave, the first waves of analogue dance bands and girl groups (the frontline vocals of Phyllis Forbes and Molly Schnick are a joy) that convinces and put a big grin on this listener’s face. Oh and they sure know how to name a tune, take for example ‘The Song So Good They Named It Thrice’, ‘2005: A Face Odyssey’ and ‘Dear Mr. Bush, There Are Over 100 Words For Shit And Only 1 For Music. Fuck You, Out Hud’.
Colin Buttimer
February 2005
Published by Milkfactory