Please be aware that the word “furious” and its modifications can be replaced with “in love” and variants thereon throughout this rant. Or they could, if the Scissor Sisters hadn't cancelled their October 10th Toronto concert. I’d been looking forward to it for weeks – months – ever since that Jim Henson-decorated 15 seconds I glimpsed from the 2005 Brit Awards.
And so, I’m fucking fundamentally furious with the Scissor Sisters.
I'm furious because their debut album Scissor Sisters was smiley drama pop, not to mention danceable in the extreme, without sounding engineered or contrived. How could something so undeniably poppy still sound so bold? The balls, the almighty balls to that immortal cover of “Comfortably Numb”! The jaw-droppingly spot-on sketch of crystal meth dependence in “Return to Oz”! The dizzy celebration of booty peddling on “Filthy and Gorgeous”!
I’m furious because their new album, Ta-Dah, was no sort of let down. Very different from Scissor Sisters, it functions better as a piece and its ballsy insouciance has a masterful assurance. “I Don’t Feel Like Dancin’”, the first track and the first single, is so brassily emblematic of this – how dare they make a track with such a title and theme 2006’s most danceable piece of music?
Also infuriatingly (because I’d rather review than rant), I can’t ruin any surprises by describing the progress of the album. It’s fascinating and fun on the first listen and increasingly engaging with repetition, from the cheerful, creepy plink-plunking of “I Can’t Decide” to the hesitant lovey-doveyness of “Might Tell You Tonight”. I swear the cocky bastards take pleasure in waltzing elegantly down the razor’s edge separating “completely engaging” from “completely annoying”. You have to hear it for yourself.
Even more infuriatingly, the gap between their energy and creativity and those of the acts with which they share chart space in North America and Britain indicate they’re popular music’s lonely bright light at the moment. As I write David Hasselhoff has jumped into BBC 1’s Singles chart right behind them. Justin Timberlake is providing their highest caliber company at the moment. Justin Timberlake.
And so there’s nothing left for me to do: I’m holding myself hostage. Until the Scissor Sisters re-schedule their Toronto show, every time I feel like listening to Ta-Dah I’m going to listen to FutureSex / LoveSounds instead. The pain and rage will be felt for miles round.