RingMaster Review: MFC Chicken "Music For Chicken"
Sometimes things are just meant to be and that is the strong feeling when it comes to rock n rollers MFC Chicken and the background story to the band. It all started with the arrival of Canadian Spencer Evoy who with his trusty sax in tow moved over to the UK around a year ago. On what he called a pilgrimage to the recording studio of Joe Meek he found himself outside a fried chicken shop on Holloway Road, London. With stomach yearning for the delicacies within but pockets financially incapable to fully assist, Evoy slipped out his trusty friend…his sax you naughty people…and proceeded to busk for his supper. His sounds made their eager way through the window of the flat above the shop leading to its occupant bassist Bret Bolton to call out his appreciation and thus two musical brothers were united from that point on, the pair within days forming a band named after the now closed down shop, MFC Chicken.
It is a story which almost reaches fact is stranger than fiction heights but surely is the proof that this band was destined to bless the world with its presence, and wow does it do that with its debut album Music For Chicken. The release is pure joy from start to finish, Evoy and Mancunian Bolton alongside Brazilian Alberto Zioli on guitar, and London boys Reverand Parsley and Ravi on keys and drums respectively, unleashing the purest joy with their poultry themed party of garage rock n roll driven rhythm and blues. There is one warning though, for some reason it will make you feel rather hungry by the end of its final slice of pleasure.
Released August 6th via Dirty Water Records, a label which cannot do any wrong right now with its releases it seems, the album strolls up to the ear with a confident swagger called Chicken, Baby, Chicken. With initially the guitar teasingly showing off alongside great group harmonic shouts, the song erupts into an eager tonic for the heart through a fiery blend of Billy Haley, Johnny Burnette and Hasil Adkins. It is a great start easily matched by the following Every Girl on The Tube. From its first surge of Evoy pumping the senses full of tenor sax goodness the song ignites a feisty air for its greedy sounds, a garage rawness which lights the fuse for further submission and adoration. The guitar of Zioli is as keen and wonderfully teasing as the sax play and combined with the beats, keys, and playful bass sounds makes for one exuberant track.
As each song leaves its crazed energy the album simply gets better and better. It is not that the latter songs are any better than the earlier ones just that the accumulative effect is overwhelming and leaves one grinning like a man who just got lucky, which I guess is what happened. Tracks like the hot and crazed instrumental Wild Safari with its elephant sax sounds and slight Batman theme sounding hook has limbs and emotions jumping even if the lack of rampaging chickens and stampeding cockerels noises is disappointing, whilst the throbbing Laundromatic is a scorching melodic blitz upon the ear with seeds in the band which has influenced MFC Chicken by their own admission the most The Sonics, which simply excites.
Music For Chicken at times offers up flavours which are easily recognisable in other bands and songs though you always feel it is merely coincidence such as with Chicken On The Bone, the song a dead ringer for a Showaddywaddy song well if it had been given steroids and introduced to Johnny Kidd and The Pirates. Wine, Women, Rock’n’Roll is another with familiarity from a seeming heavy spice of Johnny Carroll splashed with a wash of Screamin Jay Hawkins.
The album closes as magnificently as it started with the trio of Man-Sized Tissues, Family Value Meal, and Fifty-Seven Acres of Pain ensuring every drip of pleasure is wrung into the heart of their recipients. The middle of the three is especially wonderful, its explosive melodic beauty of keys and guitar punctuated with sensational sax clucking a delight not heard since the fifties Fat Daddy Holems song, strangely enough called Chicken Rock.
Music For Chicken is nothing but total pleasure and a party for the ear and heart to gate crash relentlessly whilst MFC Chicken has one diving into the fridge, damn them.