In It For The Music
Those boyish, talented lads from London somehow came up with a genius sophomore album that transcends any sort of niche critics might have imagined them in following 1995's I Should Coco.
In the aftermath of that resounding debut, director Steven Spielberg offered to create a Monkees-esque television series involving Supergrass, expounding upon the montage of youthful antics in their "Alright" video. Lucky for us, the boys refused, opting instead to repair to the studio and the writing room, eventually creating the wildly eclectic and paradoxically titled In It For The Money.
The title track opens the album and sets the pace for its relentless sense of exploration. It begins with a droning, fingerpicked intro that picks up steam and propels the listener straight into chanting of "We're in it for the money / we're in it for the money" before that too explodes into a classic rock riff led by frontman Gaz Coombes' energetic howling. By the two-minute mark of the record, Supergrass has already exposed us to four different hooks, in an easygoing manner that hints "you ain't heard nothin' yet."
The trio's conspicuous musical talent manifests itself in more varied guises here than it did on Coco, with elements of funk and soul trickling into the mix, and songs being driven by horns and keyboards. Songs like "G-Song" and "Cheapskate" open new doors for the band by being based on the repetition of soulful grooves. And the hit "Late In The Day" melts from its acoustic beginnings into a funky little chorus that well supports the rollicking melody.
The record is not bereft of anthemic rockers - "Sun Hits The Sky" and "Richard III" will do nicely. Nor has the band lost its infallible sense of humor - the closing track of In It For The Money, "Sometimes I Make You Sad," is a bizarre beat-box extravaganza.
Altogether a fine recording, Supergrass' second album wades equally into the waters of thinking rock and feeling rock. It's a dandy, a precious slice of modern musicality to be enjoyed at all times of the day.
Troy Carpenter, Nude As The News