The title track to this EP is a shindig. Yes, absolutely
a shindig. And, as such, it is easy to see why Skinny Lister got on
a barge/ in a Land Rover with a double bass on the roof and popped
up at parties all over the place in recent years, to such a great
extent that PRS awarded them the distinction of 'Hardest Working band'
of Summer 2011. Written by the father of girl singer, Lorna Thomas,
and her songwriter brother, Max, the fact that their Dad is known
as Party George speaks volumes as to why 'Forty pound wedding' champions
folk harping back to classic Pogues and all the things that are loved
about them to make for a joyful singsong of a, er, song. Thumping
guitar, tin whistles and fiddles all whirr and jig in abundance- telling
the story of a nuptial celebration where curtain rings are exchanged
and pints of cider are drunk, a waltz by the name of 'Seventeen summers'
follows to make the quintet sound yet even more like vagabonds. Though
taking a nostalgic look at moving from the North to the dirty delights
of the big smoke, Dan Heptinstall still can't help but concede 'On
these rotten streets/ My best days have been spent'. You'll bet that
is the truth. Because they sound like they're having the time of their
And this was not what I expected in the slightest, particularly from
a band produced by the same bloke responsible for Bat for Lashes and
James Yorkston. In fact, more of what I was expecting, based on the
above reference alone, is actually showcased on the remixes that make
up the last half of the release, the remixes that make Skinny Lister
sound like a completely different band altogether. Adding a certain
dramatic versatility to their talent, where once there was foot stomping
and a distinctive traditional sound, so the same melodic tracks and
cute backing vocals go on to compete with a swathe of electronic beats.
Which makes them powerful in a different way- the Plough and Orion
remix particularly sounds like Donna Summer's best club classic, both
remixes sound a bit like The Whip so the obvious question is this:
do Skinny Lister belong in the past or the future? Oh, who needs to
get that philosophical? This is not what a band like this is about.
All you need to know that the result of both styles on this here EP
is a free-spirited and spontaneous energy that has seen the quartet
betraying the family surname their band takes its very essence from.
Because Skinny Lister would far from send you to sleep. Look up what
that means in their biog when you're checking them out a bit more.