Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating 9/10
Crisis! What Crisis? It may as well be the rallying call to what could at times be perceived as a beleaguered music industry, under pressure to constantly deliver in many cases the same sterile underwhelming stereotypical crass commercialism and in which makes the two ends of the spectrum just as much at fault as those who queue up and proclaiming it’s always been their dream to be a singer; possibly having had that dream since the first read that any of the many so called talent shows were going to be in town. On one side you have that, run by people who seem hell bent to destroy music from television’s side and then you have the likes of Bono and U2 giving their music away for nothing, well aside from the hefty cheque from online music fronts that is.
Being caught in the middle is not easy, being true to the performance is a difficult cause in which to fly the proud and mighty flag of individual creativity and yet like many before them Modest Midget have come up with something so fascinating, so disturbingly cool that you can only wonder just how they managed to keep their latest album Crysis from being ripped from their hands and played all over the continent in a two fingered salute way to those who seem hell bent of making music bland, formulaic and desperately dull. Whichever deity is on the side of artistic individuality, for what Modest Midget have managed to come up with throughout this interesting and attention-grabbing album, you should only be suggesting that they take a week or two off as they have obviously running on overtime with no fixed breaks and forgoing their dinner hour to act as the finest Muse Lonny Ziblat, Willem Smid, Dimitar Bodurov and Maarten Bakker.
Crisis? What crisis? For Crysis is a work of art, surely to be found being sheltered by the custodians of The Louvre and yet being lovingly fondled by a curious and motivated fan base.
Tracks such as A Centurion’s Itchy Belly, Periscope Down, the rather remarkable covering of Roy Orbison’s (Oh) Pretty Woman the tantalising Flight of the Cockroach, and Crisis (Awake of the Sheep) all give hope in a world that at times may seem bleaker than a Manchester United manager’s prospects of winning the Champions League in the next 20 years. The songs not only blister the creeping death knoll afforded by those who believe that live music especially is an affront to life but also to those that sneer at individuality, those who believe everything should be packaged on a shelf with the same barcode running their the same collective heart. Modest Midget are a class act, they turn crisis into fortune and all because they took a chance on being absolutely true.
An album in which if it doesn’t make you smile, then surely you are far too gone for redemption!
Ian D. Hall