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CD Feature/ Pleasure Forever: "Bodies Need Rest"

img  Tobias

When bands disband, their legacy mostly consists of obscure live recordings, commercially orientated greatest hits collections or unlovingly compiled samplers with “lost tracks”. In either case, things are mainly about sucking money from a dried-up well and clearing out the archives to make way for the next sensation. “Bodies need Rest” is a different case, however, and actually makes you want to ask for the three former Pleasure Forever members to get together and start recording again. 

At a mere 31-minutes, these four previously unavailable songs and four cover versions hardly add up to a fully fledged album, but rather to a short yet intense trip into the world of a band who was capable of reconsiling the vulnerable with the powerful, darkness with light and the past with the present. Their inclination towards the melodic magic of the 60s, the liverish love of 80s pop bard Morrisey and their historic closenss to the bipolar rock revolution ignited in the 90s by some of the bands on the very Subpop label they would sign with has always made them a hard cookie for the journalists and an immediate favourite for those unafraid of walking the line between razorsharp edges and an unashamed sweetness. When dealing with such a band, the typical sarcasm of the industry crumbles. Conspiracy Records have gladly waited eight years for the completion of this CD, while Subpop have been kind enough to donate the necessary master tapes – signs that this threepiece has put great value on working with friends, not business partners. You can hear it in the music as well, the way they turn “The Bars” by punk icons Black Flag into a smouldering, bouncing, burning funky groove monster or “Honey Honey” by ABBA (!) into a gently cranking piece of dreamy indie pop reveals just as much self-assuredness about what they have to offer to these pieces as well as an honest reverence and respect for the originals. Their own material, meanwhile, shows them as a group who likes to play with fire, but rather to use it for roasting marshmellows – all of these frantic and sweaty rock tracks flow into catchy chorusses and harmonic heaven.

Of course, David Clifford, Joshua Hughes and Andrew Rothbard are all still musically active in different corners of the USA and for those who have ploughed through the Pleasure Forever backcatalogue, there is still quite a bit of material to discover from their previous incarnations as The VSS and Slave. And yet, this Mini album demonstrates that their combined efforts set free an energy which will be hard to repeat anywhere else. Let’s hope these bodies will have had enough rest soon.

By Tobias Fischer

Homepage: Pleasure Forever
Homepage: Pleasure Forever at MySpace
Homepage: Conspiracy Records

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