Details Victory Shorts
“Absentee’s very existence makes the world a better place” NME 9/10
“Like Lou Reed with grubbier fingerprints.” **** Q
Born to the sounds of Barry Manillow and The Carpenters, raised on romantic comedies, and schooled in failed love and misfiring lust… Absentee emerge well-versed in the rigours of romance with their finest album to date, Victory Shorts.
Finding a seat somewhere between unreachable romanticism and hopeless realism, Victory Shorts offers lush mini romantic tragedies for those who thought Casablanca ended a little too abruptly.
Album opener ‘Shared’ sets the scene with a couple pleased as punch that they found each other, until things take a darker turn with Absentee smashing their way through ‘Boy, Did She Teach You Nothing?’ latest EP title-track ‘Bitchstealer’ and ‘Love Has Had Its Way’ in an attempt to get to the truth of the matter: Happy endings don’t come easy.
‘The Nurses Don’t Notice a Thing’ takes us on a walk with someone looking for hope in a maternity wing: “our eyes meeting as your waters break and I’m born again as him or her,” meditating on the beauty of innocence as: “the simplest feelings of love explode into the room like cowboys in saloons… I want to clap but it seems inappropriate.” In ‘We Smash Plates’ the lovers’ first argument and consequent makeup is summed up in a mess of broken crockery: “I ask you kindly to take a seat whilst I’m sweeping broken china from around your feet, like a miner bringing riches from the core… we both smile knowing there will always be more”.
By album closer ‘That Old Ghost’, we’re left contemplating a lovers’ grip: “the way that you hold me, it won’t be my heart that breaks first” and the enduring qualities of love found the hard way: “you don’t have to ask me if you want me to stay… I’m not a bird, I’m not a whore… you can just clap your hands and make me run away”.
Marked with the influence of Johnny Cash, Pavement and The Velvet Underground, produced/engineered/mixed by Nick Terry (Klaxons, Libertines, Bernard Butler), and shot through with the originality and humour we’ve come to expect from Absentee, Victory Shorts stands alone as the band’s strongest, most honest record yet.