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Pest – All Out Fall Out

Really not a fan of funk, the self-description of Deptford (London)’s Pest leads off with the word scarily up-front; but I braved it, and I think you’ll be interested too.

Fortunately, All Out Fall Out takes a surfeit of cues from good disco and old R&B—with its Wah-Wah’s and its killer-quick drum fills and its Rhodes keys—that it’s quickly saved. Throw in a skilled DJ, and this is really not a funk record. It’s down-tempo hip-hop. Furthermore, funk is built on the bass—often a fretless one. This doesn’t have that going on, at all; another saving grace.


Instrumental tracks that break into a semblance of vocals derived solely from samples, with few exceptions. When vocals do break in, it is rap and not singing that you hear. Like its American counterpart (and like many a musical genre for that matter), only a small percent of British rap is ‘good’, and Pest’s examples of it are in no way innovative or complicated. I could do without the vocals altogether, but fortunately there aren’t too many…

Pest is not a new-comer to music-making. AOFO comes on the heels of a long touring stint that followed their 2003 debut, Necessary Measures. With the experience of making music together, and their innate skill, they have put together a solid second record—which, in this writer’s perspective, is the true test of a band. I give them their due credit for making it over the funk hurdle. Pest gets it.


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