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The Bloodstreams - Parliament of Magpies (self-released)

27 June 2024

It’s called the “music” business but the best bands, for me at least, are as much about the words as the tune that carries those thoughts and ideas along. Whether it is about subtle messages, social commentary, witty wordplay or accessible singalongability, it all counts; just take your pick. Actually, you don’t have to take your pick; listen to “Parliament of Magpies,” the new one from The Bloodstreams …it has the lot.

For a start, anything that sounds like a strange hybrid of The B-52s and Scott Walker shouldn’t exist, but I’m very glad that it. Best of all, they come on like a Summer of Love psychedelic band made up of members of The Cramps trying to reinvent pop in their own image. Make of that what you will.

But as great, not to mention original, as the music is, the timing is impeccable. With their own UK home gearing up for a general election, their barbed and brilliant comments, wit and wisdom, and descriptions of those in positions of power are both timely and lamentably accurate. And put to their mad, fractured and menacing sound, this feels like a rallying cry for change coming from the fringes of society. And I don’t just mean a shift in government, the ushering in of a new Parliament of Magpies, grabbing whichever shiny things take their eye. But real system change.

You could argue that changing Rishi Sunak’s thieves for *Keir Starmer’s villains is like changing your tie because you have soiled your underwear! I guess only time will tell.