Take Control by Slaves

Take a look at the pink balaclava sticker-clad bus stops around Leeds and you’ll see there’s a definite buzz for Take Control, the second album from punk duo Slaves. Produced by Mike D of the Beastie Boys, the 16-track album transports the listener to the sweat and grit of the mosh with heavy basslines, convulsive choruses and raging riffs certain to make throats raw at their gigs.

‘Rich Man’ feels like a nostalgic stagger back to old Slaves, a rebellious spit-in-the-face of, well, the rich man, announcing “rich man, I’m not your bitch man”. Elsewhere though, the gritty, riot chaos of single ‘Consume Or Be Consumed’ (featuring Mike D’s fiery rapcore cameo) and ‘Play Dead’ encapsulate Slaves’ massive and more developed, yet deliberately unsophisticated, sound. ‘F–k The Hi-Hat’, a 45 second track of vocalist Laurie spluttering the title over Isaac’s raw, unpolished drumming, sounds like it’s surging from your neighbour’s garage, while the distorted fuzz of ‘STDs/PHDs’ introduces shadier dynamics to the Kent duo’s sound.

But Take Control still throbs with the insubordination and unapologetic delinquency that characterises Slaves, all the way to closing track ‘Same Again’- an emphatic outcry against the cyclicism of working a dead-end job, only to get the next round at the local ‘Spoons (“Same again / Week in, week out / I’ll get the next one”).

Released Friday 30th September through Virgin EMI, Take Control overall is an alive and raw album that will pulsate through every town on their upcoming UK Tour in November- stopping at Leeds’ O2 Academy on Tuesday 15th.

Meg Firth

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