The Inevitable Pinhole Burns
Lost & Still Confused (Corporate Records)
Not enough use is made of cultural references in rock these days. David Bowie used to stuff his earlier tunes with them (John Lennon and Mickey Mouse in ‘Life On Mars’ etc) and Half Man Half Biscuit have been known to namedrop Una Stubbs and Nerris Hughes on more than a few occasions.
But, by and large, it’s a dying craft. It appears today’s crop of indier-than-thou haircuts are too scared to defer to anybody better than them – perhaps because it might unveil an inherent lack of personal confidence and/or integrity.
This is not a charge that can be levelled at London’s Inevitable Pinhole Burns. No sir. These chaps are proud to celebrate the characters who push their buttons, whether that might be James Dean (but not James Dean Bradfield), Thurston ‘fucking hardcore’ Moore or, erm, Poison’s Bret Michaels (as seen in the Fallen Angel video, 1987).
It’s this pride, coupled with an irrepressible affection for the sort of 1990s indie that many of us have long since forgotten about (to our shame) that makes this debut album such a compulsive listen.
It’s not just in the Jarvis Cocker-isms of lust song ’10 Degrees At Old Street’, it’s also in the Long Ryders earnestness of opening item ‘Finite Amount Of Lunatics’ and the guitary juggernaut and general shoutiness of ‘Gin’ and, later, ‘Suitcase’.
But it’s the likes of ‘Cassie’, a faux-classic warning tale of the archetypal lascivious London runaway goodtime gal that really gets the listener in a reminiscent mood for all those Kinky Machine and Nilon Bombers 10″ EPs that never seem to shift at car boot sales these days.
Maybe TIPB are on the crest of something, and we’ll soon be joining them at a Cud reunion in Islington. Or maybe they are merely super-diligent at ploughing their own furrows.
Whichever it might be, this is a great (not good, great) album that effortlessly winds back the years and pins back the ears in a way that the numerous vintage coat-tail riders of Hoxton can only dream of achieving.
‘Lost & Still Confused’ can be downloaded from Corporate Records via this link.
Pay as much or as little as you want.
TIPB play live at London’s 100 Club, New Year’s Eve.