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Six By Seven - The Closer We Get / Greatest Hits album review

Nefarious noise pop geniuses re-spark their dark magic

Cover art for Six By Seven - The Closer We Get / Greatest Hits album

With their misanthropic snarls, their dense, pulsating beats and their way of making menacing electro-rock guitars sound like they’re garrotting you from the dark in a bloodspattered lock-up, Nottingham’s Six By Seven are one of the greatest ‘lost’ bands of the past 20 years. Their avid cult endures though, hence this crowdfunded Greatest Hits and a reissue of their celebrated 2000 second album.

As sinister as the title suggests, The Closer We Get (810) encapsulates their grisly grace, with New Year coming on like a meteor strike on the ENO, One Easy Ship Away making like a suicidal Smashing Pumpkins, and My Life Is An Accident and Ten Places To Die proving the band’s mastery of the stalking noise-rock throb that spends three minutes creeping up on you then plunges a cattle prod into your spinal column.

The fulcrum is the visceral noise-punk of Eat Junk Become Junk, rock’s angriest ever nutritional advice, and it’s the centrepiece of the Greatest Hits (910) disc too. Here a wider career perspective illuminates their more sophisticated art-scree torch songs (A Beautiful Shape, I O U Love, So Close, European Me, the staggering Oh! Dear) and their stratospheric pop blasts (Crying, For You, Bochum). That they include the eight-minute tribal gothic monstrosity Truce as a ‘greatest hit’ proves they were Satan’s Spiritualized, and we owe them love.