Gossip have returned two years after their last release with a new drummer and a slightly new sound. Described as everything from dance-punk to "Pointer Sisters without synths", this is a preview of their upcoming album, coming out in January. "Standing In The Way Of Control" comes backed with a stellar remix by Le Tigre, with art by Kim Gordon of Sonic Youth.
It's flatly unfair that the Gossip aren't a massive success, a rocknroll giant slayer, especially as they unleash another 10-song, 30-minute zinger like Standing in the Way of Control.
Singer Beth Ditto's boundless, whether shouting out the title song's chorus or feather-dusting the lyric on Meg White-sounding album closer, "Dark Lines." The band rocks with an unerring simplicity, a leanness that writhes. The big-beat, hop-along (and sing-along) "Listen Up," is the centerpiece here, a stripped focus on the Gossip's core conviction, that rhythm can rock like little else. The tune has Ditto holding court over a bluntly simple one-two beat, cautioning a crowd that by rights ought to be tenfold larger: "now gather round/now listen up," warning them that "some people talk way too much." As Ditto stuns, drummer Hannah Blilie's beat pounds, and Brace Paine's guitar lays down a simple law. Ignorance of that law is no excuse. --Andrew Bartlett