Since Mika Miko split and No Age started touring the world, LA’s The Smell scene has been searching for a new, less garage-y sound, and its found it in ravesploitation – a nerdy branch of electroclash that thrives on melodrama and comic books. It’s music that refutes good times are a crime, here from Captain Ahab’s debut title down to its underlying humour (see part-spoken social commentary ‘I Don’t Have A Dick’, through which singer Jonathan lays ludicrous, macho claims to driving the fastest car in world and such like). When the silliness runs away from this LA duo, it can seem a bit Blood Hound Gang (‘How 2 Party’), but more often than not ‘The End of Irony’ is equal parts admirably shameless and wholly inventive, like on ‘Acting Hard’, which mixes Gregorian monk chants with hip-hop samples and Fuck Buttons-esque, nightmarish vocals.

By Stuart Stubbs

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