Unrecorded reviews Pillage & Plunder’s new LP The Show Must Go Wrong

Pillage & Plunder and Gokul Parasuram Hsiang-Ming Wen Noah Kess the show must go wrong baby robot media

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, three-piece band Pillage & Plunder are far, far away from all that’s happening in Edinburgh right now. However, they sound like they’d thrive here, their debut album sounding like either a zany musical in itself, or a bunch of collected memories about a few weeks spent in Edinburgh. The Show Must Go Wrong (the title of which deserves applause and to be in lights somewhere) is full of unexpected left turns, theatrical bombast, and a self-deprecating sense of silliness that makes it a pleasure to listen to. There are air raid sirens, touching acoustic moments, emo-rock guitar play, songs that veer into waltz tempos, and a bunch of other features that help keep your attention fixed.

It’s appropriate that the album begins with a track called “Beetlejuice” as it not only sets the scene, but sounds like the inside of the titular character’s head. Backing vocals wander about in the background like some cartoon graveyard scene, before the track wanders into sounding like some twisted take on a swing song with vibraphone keys and brasswork teetering about the place with a playful disregard. Even though they were overdubbed after the band got the backing track down, they still sound like they’re just wandering through. This kind of musical theme continues throughout the album: “Boogeyman” is a tepid kid’s nightmare with guitars pummelling away; “I Will Drink the Ocean When I Go There” has Soviet marching noises punctuating its intro for no reason other than “Why the hell not?”; “The Last Date” goes into doo-wop territory unabashedly before cutting into a garage pop workout. Doing left turns in any kind of rock music is far from anything new, but perhaps because of the light-hearted workmanship the trio approach theirs with, it sounds fresh for the most part. READ MORE…

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