Jake’s Jams: How to Stop Your Brain in an Accident

Every other Thursday check out Jake's Jams to see an album from any era, genre, or artist recommended by Jake Standerfer

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While listening to How to Stop Your Brain in an Accident by the noise rock driven UK band Future of the Left, one particular image comes to mind: A meaty man giving the middle finger to his authoritarian society while simultaneously stumbling in a drunken stupor.

Deriving inspiration from their dissatisfaction with the music industry and their previous experiences involving it (several members hail from past broken up bands such as Mclusky and Jarcrew), How to Stop Your Brain in an Accident blends satirically brutal lyricism and vocals with hard bass lines and grinding rage. Songs vary, but largely take form as comical testaments against ‘the man’ and its institutions.

One of the most appealing aspects of the artful composition is the back and forth fashion in which tracks instantaneously rotate on a sharp note, shifting mood and structure on a whim, and then falling back into normality just as quickly . For example, “Something happened” holds a paranoid presence throughout its opening, exhibiting fuzzy atmospheric ambient chords, but swings on a single note, erupting in a joyful upheaval of cheer, yet soon falling back into its melancholy haze.

Cheeky, bloated, perplexing, and ultimately British, the comical lyrics breath a dry humor into most tracks, often confounding the listener with lines that have to speak for themselves, like this excerpt from “Things to Say to Friendly Policemen”: “Make me into your kettle drum / Turn me into your black percussion / Pull me into your parking shed / Make believe I’m your second cousin”.

Compounding every morsel of satirical rant into one song, “Singing of the Bonesaws” contains a single continuous tirade of disgust against pop culture that diverges into individual tangents, each more nonsensical. The polemic onslaught concludes with a hypnotic repetition of a certain crass phrase continuously, fizzing into a hasty close.

One track in particular touches upon a lighter note, standing out as distinct compared to its predecessors and successors. “French Lessons” utilizes simple piano and guitar melodies without the distortion of other tracks. It gracefully executes itself cleverly, summoning themes of childhood, family, and love, extending and expressing itself especially with use of lyrics such as “They say the price of love is a black hole / Where your friends were / Where your social life sits”.

Greedy, grimy, critical and crass, How to Stop Your Brain in an Accident certainly delivers, providing a punching bag for the consciousness and inner ear to annihilate. Venturing into places of violence, be careful making a journey into the record, the depraved lewdness and tempting madness within may start to become appealing.

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