Psychotic, demented fun!
Adam Carroll | 01/22/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
""I'll... I'll teach them to play the harmonica!" pleads trumpet player and vocalist Einar Orn at the beginning of the first track, `Traitor'. Barely audible, said harmonica starts to play, and at this point you instinctively reach to turn up the volume - but then the drums start, and the insanity begins.The music is on the edge by itself, but with lead vocalist Björk Gudmundsdottir trading frenzied lines with Orn, the result is something that's completely and utterly over the edge. Every song is filled with a frenetic energy, and Björk's voice is so unpredictable that in some tracks she will quite literally be whispering in one moment and screaming the next. Einar Orn, meanwhile, alternates between a simple lunatic to something akin to a raging werewolf on some tracks. It really is amazing - and this was the Cubes' debut album! Need a charge? Forget that fork in the toaster - go pick up Life's Too Good."
Your Chances of Actually Dying Increase on First Listen!
NOWAY | Kansas City, MO United States | 07/30/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Some people might think of this band as being "irritating", but it is part of their art. Listening to this album is like watching an improvised theatre performance.The sound of this band is both 'crazy', and 'uplifting'. It is almost impossible to put these two words together to describe something, yet it is! The album starts very low, forcing you to pump up the volume (to hear whats going on). All of a sudden, "BOOM" the drums enter! This effect might give someone a heart attack! Other things that might kill you are Einar's howls and Bjork's "Cut-throat" voice. Her voice is very untamed, unlike that in her solo work these days. It goes everywhere and morphs a lot. She might be a little innocent girl one second, then the next a fierce monster that wants to eat you alive! Another thing about Bjork in this band, is that she seems to be having a lot more fun than in her new stuff.This album is not only for Bjork fans (in fact, some people prefer this to her solo stuff), but for music enthusiasts. It is a revolution in Pop music. A cult classic!"
Charles R Gigante | 04/21/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)
"what more could you ask for from a pop album? intensity, humor, rage, love, and passion are some proper words to describe this band from iceland. they came onto the music scene in the late eighties with a brand of pop music completely foreign to american ears. bordering perfection and complete disaster, these songs challenge listeners who may think they are sure of what is good and what is not in pop music. there is an amount of uncertainty in the compositions that gives this record a combination of youthful fun and anarchist rage that only a band from as remote a place as iceland could come from. The most beautiful song is also the most talked about. "Birthday" demonstrated to the world, the brilliance and uniqueness of Bjork's voice. It also allowed the Sugarcubes to go on and release two more records internationally, before splitting up shortly thereafter. The latter two were much less warmly recieved than "Life", but that's to be expected, as the sugarcubes' attitudes towards recognition has been one of displeasure...hence the two records without big radio hits or as much pop sensibility as Birthday. But this particular record means so much to so many people for reasons as varied as the music. Yes, it introduced the world to bjork, but it also introduced us to a much different take on pop music. I don't need to explain why the eigthies was such a tumultuous time for popular music, but I do think that this record snapped some people out of the mindset the eighties produced. Lacking any pretense and materialism, the sugarcubes came out of the arctic with a attitude all their own. Their sound and attitude is where I believe 'alternative' music was born. If you look at our tattered history of pop music, the sugarcubes, and particularly this album, should hold a high position in the ranks of musical credibility and artistic integrity."