Red Paintings - The Revolution is Never Coming

  by Dave Goodwin

published: 14 / 10 / 2013

Red Paintings - The Revolution is Never Coming

Label: BRR
Format: CD
Offbeat but breathtakingly epic and original second album from Australian-formed but Los Angeles-based band, the Red Paintings


Sometime just before the dawn of the new Millennium, visionary performer and advocate for animal rights Trash McSweeney suffered a near-fatal seizure, which compelled him to share with the world all his ideas about what he has seen and felt since then. By taking to his guitar, piano and notebook he has somehow managed to cram all he has witnessed into his band the Red Paintings’ highly anticipated second album, ‘The Revolution is Never Coming’. While McSweeney and his band the Red Paintings are originally from Geelong, Australia, they are now based in Los Angeles and incorporate guitars, bass, drums, cello and violin into their sound. They also use whenever possible other orchestration, vocalists and performance art with the use of costumes, themes and paintings. Their shows, if you manage to catch one, are a truly and unique art experience. They have been likened to huge acts like Radiohead, Muse and Arcade Fire, and have a genre spanning sound that is as easily at home in baroque-pop, punk, metal, indie-rock and beyond. Finally mixed in Los Angeles after five years in the making. ‘The Revolution is Never Coming’ is a record of epic proportions. With their diverse history and cult following ‘The Revolution Is Never Coming’ is what Trash hopes will be the turning point in the band’s fortunes. 51, 000 Facebook likes can't be wrong, and they have been asked to support bands in the past such as Mogwai, the Dresden Dolls, American poet Saul Williams and Mindless Self Indulgence. In recent times in the United States they have supported the Posies, Atari Teenage Riot and MSI, and have also played major music festivals including Big Day Out, Livid, and The Great Escape. The Red Paintings have also supported animal rights organizations playing at several charity events supporting welfare groups like Black Fish and Mercy for Animals. And what of the actual album itself? The likeness to Muse stands out straightaway, so if you lean towards the way of the Devonshire giants you won't be disappointed here. With what we have lavished you with so far, you would probably think this album focuses a lot on saving animals. Which it does, and there are songs as well about mermaids, alien foetuses, the Virgin Mary, green coats, kimonos, UFOs and the Medusa, all of which are amongst the band’s favourite likes. With their major influences including artworks, battery operated toys, painters and the universe, what else would you expect? But the content of the album in all seriousness is breathtakingly well put together and delivered. You begin to understand its five years in the making, and by the time you get to the immense ‘Walls‘ you wonder how you are going to bring yourself round long enough ever again to put the kettle on. There is violin and cello in abundance here, and the orchestral arrangements dotted around the whole album are as special as the percussion is in the US single release, ‘Streets Fell Into My Window’. Everyone listening to it will draw their own opinions on this. Personally I hear serious smatterings of Gary Numan in Trash's vocal for a start, but only at some moments. I think there is an element of ‘Jeff Wayne’s Musical Version of the War of the Worlds’ as well drifting in and out, especially on tracks like the epic ‘Wasps’ and ‘Hong Kong’. The lavish album cover with its cartoon type Geisha hide an informative inner book in the CD format, which describes the the band’s history, and the making of the album, and the loss of four friends during its recording. A big part of appeal of the Red Paintings is in the art and graphics so it is worth spending a while delving deeper into it whilst listening to the album because there is some good dark artwork in here, especially on the centre photo and also one on the back with a girl and gun on it. All in all this is a vast album extensively loaded with soft strings, blasting percussion and raucous guitars, splattered with odd sci-fi noises and tweeks and bleeps. This should catapult them into the mainstream at least and leave us all waiting for the next instalment. What worries me is how they are going to better something like this?

Track Listing:-

1 Vampires Are Chasing Me
2 Dead Children
3 Dead Adults
4 Wasps
5 The Fall of Rome
6 Walls
7 Streets Fell Into My Window
8 You're Not One of Them
9 It Is as It Was
10 Hong Kong
11 Deleted Romantic
12 Rain
13 The Revolution Is Never Coming

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Interview (2014)
Red Paintings - Interview
Dave Goodwin speaks to Trash McSweeney, the front man with Australian art rockers the Red Paintings, about his band's breathtakingly original debut album 'The Revolution is Never Coming', which took five years to record, and thier visionary stage shows

Live Reviews

Rock City, Nottingham, 13/5/2014
Red Paintings - Rock City, Nottingham, 13/5/2014
Dave Goodwin enjoys Australian band the Red Paintings' unusual brand of art rock at Rock City in Nottingham
Bodega, Nottingham, 6/2/2014

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