Wah!

Nah = Poo -- The Art of Bluff

  • AllMusic Rating
    8
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

Pete Wylie's first album as/with Wah! is his finest work, filled to the brim with passionate post-punk and blitzkrieg funk that holds an impressive level of focused intensity from front to back -- no doubt the result of having listened to Clash records over and over and over and over again. There's little of the Clash's melodic sensibility to be found, memorable guitar riffs might not be evident ever, but there's an infectiously blistered pace to the proceedings, if a bit overbearingly shouty and mushy mixing-wise. Wylie sing-shouts everything with ferocious vigor, giving the record a rare sense of immediacy. Wah! literally sounds like they're playing with the knowledge that there will be no tomorrow. Off to an iffy start, tribal drums and from the depths vocals on "The Wind Up" do exactly that. One gets wound up because they want the record to actually start. Maybe that was the point. After that, it refuses to let up, kicked off by the "Do It Clean"-meets-"Break on Through" of "Other Boys." An album sequenced for maximum impact, instrumental "The Seven Thousand Names of Wah!" (no kidding) sets the table for "Seven Minutes to Midnight," Wah!'s signature song. The instrumental serves the same purpose as Mission of Burma barnburners like "Secrets" and "All World Cowboy Romance," holding together the rest of the album's songs while upping the intensity (as if it needed upping). [Castle's attractive 2001 reissue adds eight tracks, mostly alternate versions of Nah songs, including Ian Broudie's mix jobs on "Forget the Down" and "Somesay." The liner notes are littered with photos, as well as Wylie's thoughts on each song.]

blue highlight denotes track pick