As sure as day turns to night, The Go! Team will hoist their funky flags every few years and deliver a kaleidoscopic set of sun-kissed numbers that’ll slap a smile on your face. Arriving somewhat fully formed – in a chaotic, bonkers sorta way – with 2004's 'Thunder, Lightning, Strike,' Ian Parton's brian child has always followed its own bizarre logic. The Go! Team is you half-remembering an old funky number you once dug while watching TV and falling in love all at the same time. ‘Get Up Sequences Part One' is no different and will win no new fans, but for those who admire the band's erratic outbursts, you'll be happy to welcome them back.
For Parton himself, the album became a crucial creative outpouring, recently losing his hearing in his right ear to a rare condition called Ménière's disease. Not that any woe will be found on these ten numbers, rather an exuberant love letter to life and all its batshit majesty. Kicking off with ‘Let the Seasons Work,’ the band’s trademark scrappy drums lead a wave of trumpets, flutes, electro breakdowns, and Ninja’s buoyant vocals. It’s anthemic and a little unhinged, and effectively lets the listener know that The Go! Team has not smoothed their edges. Not that we’d want them to.
The previously released ‘Cookie Scene’ raises the bar, Indigo Yaj leading a bubblegum assault of wonked out percussion and cartoon noises as her lyrical flow harkens back to old school hip-hop’s heyday. Despite containing everything but the intergalactic kitchen sink, it’s one of the album’s most focused moments and deserves a place on your playlist today.
As often is the case with the Brighton unit, though, it’s the instrumental numbers that prove most rewarding. ‘Tame The Great Plains’ is another cinematic ditty that’s just begging to be used in some coming-of-age hit, dripping with wanderlust and youthful energy. Similarly, ‘A Memo for Maceo’ starts as pure Kevin Shields worship before blasting off on its own Northern Soul-inspired destination, once more highlighting Parton's broad array of influences.
It’s this balance of influences that also trips the album up, however. As with their earlier releases, The Go! Team’s non-stop assault of joyous mania can grow tiring over an entire record, never more so than on this release despite being the shortest of the bunch. Pressing play is like being strapped to a rocket on a sugar rush, and this has always been the band’s greatest strength and weakness. Some slower tempo tracks and more developed and longer instrumentals would go a long way in giving the listener some respite.
Balance aside, ‘Get Up Sequences Part One’ sees the band doing what they do best, wading into an often cynical world filled with apathy and melodrama and detonating a glitter bomb – and you’ve always gotta love them for that.
Words: Sam Walker-Smart
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