The Museum of Installation

Old King Lud LUD2003 5 July 2003 (CD)

  1. Valediction (like a moron)
  2. I've never been hit by Mark E. Smith
  3. Museum of Installation
  4. We're the support band
  5. Graham Drew's party
  6. Get out more
  7. Bring on the substitute
  8. Approaching 40
  9. English Football 2003
  10. When I worked at Textline
  11. Bar-room bore

Q Magazine

Peel favourites resurface after a decade in the wilderness. Spiritual brethren of Half Man Half Biscuit and musically indebted to The Fall, London duo John Procter and, ahem, Will Hung have been issuing occasional lo-fi, comedic punky diktats on the state of the nation since 1987. This first outing since 1992's Idiots Savants finds them still reliably preoccupied with football, girls, beer, and the minutiae of pop culture. Get Out More and Approaching 40 capture their central, very English premise that Life Is Shit And Then You Die, while We're The Support Band is a bathos-laden, autobiographical masterpiece: "The vocals are flat, the singer's too fat/The crowd doesn't care, there's nobody there". Oddly heroic.

Ian Gittins.

In love with these times in spite of these times

"ah the fall have got it made / at last! a single in the hit parade / we love the way they rant and rave / paving the way for... i, ludicrous" (i ludicrous peel session, 1987)

Sadly, I, Ludicrous never did quite follow the fall into the hit parade. indeed, their last album, the excellent "Idiots Savants" came out as far back in the day as 1992, probably their creative (if, oddly not their popular) peak, so while I, Ludicrous haven't quite waited as long as my bloody valentine to give us a new LP (although as we've pointed out before, the two bands shared a bill on I, Ludicrous' first ever gig, as long ago as '86), it was about time. save for the "recent" single "Approaching 40" (in, er, 2000), their sporadic tenancies at the Bull and Gate have not been immortalised on digital, so this is a welcome release.

Alternating between shambling indie numbers like the opening "Valediction" or "Bring on the Substitute", both of which have real rough charm despite / because of singer Will Hung's attempts to "sing" as opposed to rap in a Mark E. Smith style fashion, and spoken word pieces like the title track, "The Museum of Installation" keeps up the I, Ludicrous formula honed since they burst forth from flexidiscs via the John Peel show so many years ago (a route taken by a select cabal of others too - anyone remember the Darling Buds ?). Of the very top tunes, "Never Been Hit by Mark E. Smith" is a tower of strength - like "Carter (They're Unstoppable)" from the last album, it pounds along and rams its point home (er, that Mr Hung has done many things, none of which include being clocked by the unpredictable Fall frontman) several times in a bid for anthemic status - it would be great to see a sea of happy faces punching the air to this as I, Ludicrous tread the Glastonbury main stage. Still, we doubt Michael Eavis could afford them - and the ramshackle production on "(We're the) Support Band" actually suits it perfectly, as they celebrate / mock the reality of the London circuit, a mere coven of warm-up bands who perpetually spend their evenings in kentish town watching each other's bands and selling their new demos to each other when they secretly long to be at home watching east enders. "Approaching 40", with its chiming guitars, also remains one of their best singles, and welcomely reappears here - and "Graham Dude's Party" is a checklist of the pitfalls and horrors of that staple of metropolitan life, the rubbish house party. There are tracks that don't really come off - "English Football 2003" means that Jamie Cureton and Bobby Zamora now have something else in common apart from being Bristol Rovers giveaways, but doesn't really gel - and one hopes the band are not starting a precedent by listing on the sleeve the various tracks that didn't quite make it on to the album, as if to taunt you that their secrets will remain tucked away in their authors' heads (and whatever became of "Dinner for One ?". But despite having the worst sleeve we can remember seeing this century, "The Museum of Iinstallation" is, clearly, an urgent purchase.

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