(Great Escape 2012 flavoured!) Bands to Watch #241: Money

By on Wednesday, 2nd May 2012 at 12:00 pm

There’s been an explosion of bands with deliberately un-Googleable names – The Internet, College, and now we have Money. Although after getting to know the band’s music and modus operandi a bit better, I wouldn’t be surprised if being difficult to find on the internet suited them just fine. They have selected their few recent gigs carefully: a well-reviewed set at Salford’s Sacred Trinity church, and more importantly, a star-studded appearance at David Lynch’s exclusive Paris club Silencio appear to have cemented Money’s reputation as the act that hip trendy people want to be seen to like. But what of the substance – whither the music itself?

They specialise in atmospheric, emotive songs of almost indeterminate length, full of portent and innuendo. ‘SOLONG(GODISDEAD)’ (video below), their latest 7” single released on French imprint Almost Musique, weaves gossamer vocals with a droning two-chord rhythm section performance that sounds like it was recorded at the very far end of an enormous cathedral, all the time Jamie Lee emoting like an Alpine cowherd’s morning yawn. Initially completely impenetrable, and even after several listens more of a mood piece than a song, it could be immense, or it could be really dull and not go anywhere at all, depending on one’s mood at the time.


That Money are making waves after several name changes and not much more than a year together, indicates that they are doing something right. Whether it’s the vagueness of their promotional material, or some primal human urge to protect such a fragile sound that might collapse at any moment like an under-done soufflé, they are attracting the right attention right now. Whether they can maintain the halos after a gruelling tour of tiny provincial venues, as mere mortal bands are required to do in order to become well-known, remains to be seen.

Despite having been compared to a mellow Manic Street Preachers (surely not their latter incarnation as pious tune-free middle-aged pop-socialists), what Money are most reminiscent of is a young Barrett-era Pink Floyd. Their meandering songs, impenetrable yet vulnerable vocals, and fondness for psychedelic visuals are all shared, as is the vague sense of genuine unease and slight danger. Money add a darker edge, presumably born of one too many rainy Mancunian afternoons, and seem so cavalier with their entire ethos that they might change direction tomorrow. But for now, the dark, experimental sound remains, and for those who want to buy the hippest of hip 7-inchers, spend some money on Money.

Money are scheduled to perform at 20.30 (8:30 PM) on Friday 11th May at Horatios (NME Radar showcase) as part of this year’s Great Escape programming.

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