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Album Review: Twelve Clay Feet – More Naked Than Obscene

Twelve Clay Feet - MNTO album cover

Artist: Twelve Clay Feet

Album:  More Naked Than Obscene

Number of Tracks: 10

Release Date: 11th November 2013

Label: Kiln Records

After their enticing debut album, Totem Bells, Twelve Clay Feet return with their second recorded effort, More Naked Than Obscene. Scheduled for 11th November, it emerges in the wake of Hailstones’ release, which is the single due to appear on the completed set of tracks.

Hailstones sits within the first half of an album that doesn’t feel the need to justify itself with overproduction or a specific underlying concept. After a listen of More Naked Than Obscene there’s no denying that what has been achieved is a solid set of hook-rich recordings that, when put together, use their quality of composition create something that isn’t going to wear thin after ten tracks.

This is demonstrated perfectly by the single, which brings motion very much to the fore as each layer of sound moves at a different rate. The guitars and drums, for the most part, are quick and excited, while the lyrics drape themselves over the rapidly moving instrumentals and are carried to an abrupt climax. However, this attention to instruments rather than tone asks you to sit and listen to the sounds rather than the points of view the lyrics might convey. As a result, the question is raised; is an album that makes you feel like you shouldn’t be concentrating on all its aspects a success?

Twelve clay feet

I reiterate the fact that More Naked Than Obscene is an album of keen hooks. However, the mood it creates doesn’t really deviate enough to give a full spectrum of emotion. By The Station Light opens the album as an oddly bouncy rush of minor chords that project a feeling of foreboding in a high-pressure situation. From here, however, no one is really going to find a dramatic departure from this particular groove. Songs fluctuate in tempo but not a lot else sets them apart. This, though, shouldn’t see anyone prematurely hitting eject.

Get used to the tone as something that is just being stuck to for comfort and readjust your critical microscope, especially for the sake of the second half of the album. Wrecking Ball presents itself as the pinnacle of this particular section as its playful riffs follow a blues based formula to deliver a dynamic that matches the aggression of the track’s name.

From here onwards, nothing quite matches this level of matured style, however, the winning formula that created Hailstones has clearly been upheld throughout the remaining three songs. Last Rat In Hamelin is a shining example as it rounds off More Naked Than Obscene with echoing guitar melodies carried by a scampering rhythm. Truthfully, it is a fairly generic full-stop to the album but the composition contains a sweetness that just wont let you walk away feeling cheated.

1. By The Station Light

2. You Can’t Stop

3. Hailstones

4. Cities On Fire

5. Rags And Bones

6. Bigger Lungs

7. Wrecking Ball

8. Debutante

9. Electric Pulse

10. Last Rat In Hamelin

Through listening to this album I’ve realise just how appropriate its title is. There is something literally unclothed about More Naked Than Obscene because the album gives off a kind of musical lust through is bare, primal attraction. However, the taboo of looking at it so basically is removed because its effects will apply to everyone. Though the album’s form is something that’s been seen before, all aspects are well arranged and pleasant to take in. Twelve Clay Feet stick to their comfort zone but their skill fends off all risk of what they produce becoming stale for others.

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About The Author

Currently a 3rd year Journalism student at the University of the West of England. Real life just around the corner and getting excited about new Journalism opportunities! The more music involved, the better.

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