They're a furtive bunch, Liars - all rangy punk funk one minute; then you turn your back, and they come up with some brooding juggernaut of electronic distemper to strap themselves to the front of like "Octagon", which is not based on the Eighties Bangor nightclub of the same name, I'll wager. A touch of Eastern tones and slightly ecstatic mumbling vocals. They're always making music about magic, those treacherous guys.
Skulking in the corners of a deathly disco, "No. 1 Against the Rush" mixes up some narcotic-numbed longing with a dissipated want to kick away and dance against the pricks. Skipping rope bass and mumbles about "I want you". More claustrophobic shuffling on "A Ring on Every Finger", crippled beats and glitching words about being "still broken". I like it. (But you knew that, didn't you?) Monumental bird noises on "Ill Valley Prodigies" are way clearer than the vocals, which shows a healthy mistrust of human chauvinism. The title track has a Thom Yorke resemblance at the beginning until it flowers up more complicatedly into vibrating shards of dense keyboard noises and lyrics that hover in and out about separation and the like.
"I wanna shake temptation," he sings on "His and Mine Sensations" over rubbery, bubbly noises. At least, I think he does. Sounds a bit Beta Band or whatever people compared them to when they arrived: I forget what that was. "Teach me how to be a person." More kettles of pressurised rock steam and leak their messy juices underneath. "Who Is The Hunter" features some crooning, relatively speaking. It gets a bit more gellid and machinedisco during "Brats", swollen with a funky enormity supported with some falsetto reaching and other appropriate bells and whistles.
This deserves more listens than it's going to get this year, but I've labelled it up for 2013. The party will get really started rounds about then. In the meantime, I'm going to take away a little suitcase of good impressions, stuffed with words about magic and weirdly danceable tunes and excellent electronic noises.
Rating: Juggernauts out of Treachery