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Desmond & the Tutus

Desmond & the Tutus:____& the____

by Yusuf Laher / 09.09.2009

So the Pretoria fun bunch known as Desmond & The Tutus are back, in the form of a four* track, 13-minute, limited to 500 copies only EP. Since their debut, Tuckshop, The Tutus have definitely stepped up the production values. But at the same time, it sounds like they’ve lost some of that handmade-with-love “kwela punk” edge that made them stand out from other local indie bands.

Songs like “Peter”, “German Modern”, “Head to the Side” and “Pictures” stick with you long after you’re done listening to Tuckshop. In fact, the first album is crammed with standout tracks and strong, infectious personality. This time, although, technically, the songs are probably “better” written and more layered, the overall effect is a bit blander. I felt less of a connection.

On track four*, “New Disaster”, frontman Shane sings, “I need a new disaster, I need a new story to tell” 13 times (it feels like a lot more). By the end you’re like, “Damn straight, someone lend this dude a book, pronto.” Track two, “Meatloaf Tribute Band”, is pretty funny the first time, especially lines like, “I heard the singer invented the high five back in ‘91”, but after a couple of listens the spell is broken. Track three, “Your Girlfriend”, is about a friend’s girlfriend that looks like a man. “Dude, I hate to tell you, but your girRRRRRLLlllllfRRRrrriend looks just like Willie Nelson”.

I know it’s only five songs and 13 minutes of limited edition music to dance to, but overall it sounds like something’s missing. One classic track. Something as good as “Peter” or “Head To The Side.” Overall, the songs are neat and tidy, the basslines are disco ball groovy (damn that Nic can play) and guitarist Doug has cooked up some radical-flavoured riffs, but they breeze by without sticking. The lyrics lack depth, reverting back to a hook, and the songs lack that same feel good charm. I’m sure they’ll be fun to dance to live though (if I knew how).


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  1. Mona and the Lisa's says:

    I agree with the above. Tuckshop is going to be difficult to top. The new tracks do seem to lack something, but maybe they were made for the re-mixers of the world to play with?

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  2. Mel Barnett says:

    thats disappointing to here 🙁

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  3. Anonymous says:

    i don’t think you know what you’re talking about. i enjoyed every song that EP,

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  4. Anonymous says:

    I don’t think you know what you’re talking about. i enjoyed and still am enjoying every song on that EP. they’re fun to dance to and the lyrics are entertaining. why don’t you tuck into your mother’s supply of vodka and try learn how to dance. hopefully it’ll be better than your writing.

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  5. Anonymous says:

    hmmm… I don’t know if I trust someone who writes a review on a four song EP and calls it a five song EP. I bought it and I’m liking it… quite a lot actually…

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  6. djf says:

    Will there be copies of this available in any of the shops or are they only selling it at gigs?

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  7. Yusuf says:

    Shit, rookie mistake. 2 + 2 = 5.

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  8. lemur says:

    i’ve seen copies in look & listen

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  9. snatch says:

    you look like Willie Nelson

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  10. Regal Regenald says:

    The lyrics are funny and that’s about the only positive thing I can say about this album.

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  11. jacs says:

    It’s a good enough distraction and I’m enjoying it. Downloaded comp from their website so I don’t know if its as “finished” as the store copy.

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  12. Nic da Bass Playa says:

    Hey crazies!!

    Thanks for the revue Yusuf we dig that you are listening! Thanks to everyone listening!
    Yeah we took a different approach, we sifted out the tracks we didn’t really feel and dropped them from our live set. EP’s, you live you learn hey!

    We are trying a little something different in every writing session, and seeing whats coming out. So we can hopefully put together another monster album.

    Do you guys think we should do the quality recordings ie …and the…. EP or stick to our earlier self made EP (the sunday school sessions)?

    Cool enjoy it! My fav part of the EP when Craig and I hit that intro in Suzanne makes me smile deep inside!


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