Go Bang!

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On Shriekback's follow-up to Big Night Music they found themselves without their most formidable weapon -- Dave Allen's bass. Barry Andrews' sequenced basslines aren't bad, and Tackhead/Sugar Hill bassist Doug Wimbish, no slouch himself, steps in on some tracks; but still, an essential element of the sound is missing and it's hard not to notice. Also, Andrews appears at this time to have taken an unfortunate decision that Shriekback was really a party band, which makes for some embarrassing moments. Given all that, it's somewhat surprising to note that Go Bang! is actually pretty good. "Over the Wire" and "New Man" meld cryptic funk with appealing hooks, while "Nighttown" and "Dust and a Shadow" successfully mine the wee-hours territory of classics like "This Big Hush" or "Hubris." The only really awful moments are the shockingly dumb "Big Fun" and, worst of all, "Get Down Tonight," a most regrettable KC and the Sunshine Band cover on which Andrews tragically attempts to rap. Although Go Bang! is better than it had any right to be, much more was expected from Shriekback -- and they seemed to know it, because they subsequently disbanded (temporarily, as it turned out).

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