Roundhouse Rising

No one writes manifestos these days. No one.

Which is why Clout! are so intriguing. Even before listening to their music, the Southend group are a challenging proposition. Leafing through their blog, you will find links to club mixes, embedded Grime tracks and a guide to their favourite 90s hip hop cuts.

And then their manifesto... "CLOUT! set out to challenge the idea of having a particular role in a band, “I'm the bass player”, “he’s the drummer”, etc. Individuals do have areas of expertise, but this does not determine or limit an individual in how they can contribute in any way".

"CLOUT! play to their strengths as much as their weaknesses. We find using different combinations of instruments and roles opens up the opportunity to create diversely different songs."

All very expansive, all far beyond the usual dole queue rock clogging up Britain's indie scene. So what kind of music do Clout! make? Well, fittingly the band are impossible to tag. The working method owes a debt to the post-punk period, but more in keeping with that scene's overwhelming use of chance rather than any sonic counterpoint.

Clout! seem to place the sampler at the heart of their music, an aggregating point for cultural debris stretched over the course of half a century. Curiously, one of their early tracks could hold the key: 'The Pre-Party (Don't Be Sad)' is tagged as 'Psychedelic Hip Hop' on SoundCloud.

Psychedelic in terms of broadening minds, in connecting music with a far wider sense of culture. Hip hop in the sense of breaking boundaries, borrowing magpie life from the refuse of pop culture.

Continually expanding and evolving, Clout! have released just one EP to date. Dropping past Roundhouse Rising on Friday (February 11th) the band pointed to a few possible directions for future exploration.

We don't know when that will happen. What we do know, is that 'It's Too Late' - stripped from their debut EP - is one of the most curious, undefinable things we've heard in a very long time.

CLOUT! - Its Too Late by grahamangus

- - -

Find out more about Roundhouse Rising.

Follow Clash: