CMU Approved

Approved: Clean George IV

By | Published on Thursday 15 March 2012

Clean George

My main criticism of Katy B’s debut album, ‘On A Mission’, was that she read out all her thank yous over the end of the final track, a move that didn’t really lend itself to repeat listens. There’s always an exception to the rule though, and it bothers me a lot less that ‘XP Avenue’, a track that sits in the centre of Clean George IV’s debut album ‘God Save The Clean’, features lyrics that double up as the record’s credits.

But for Clean George IV, aka George McFall, it works. It fits in with the mild absurdity of the entire album. You could, if you so wanted, call him a Scottish Andrew WK, the Californian optimism replaced by a north of the border gloom. Instead of relentless enthusiasm and song titles like ‘Party Hard’ and ‘Long Live The Party’, you get a more downbeat outlook with song titles like ‘Real Men Take Speed’ and ‘The Great Highland Crack Epidemic’. And I think I prefer it that way.

McFall began working on ‘God Save The Clean’ in 2007, releasing the brilliant ‘First Blast Of The Trumpet Against The Monstrous Regiment Of Women’ the same year. But the project went on hold for a few years, in which time he began a classical music degree and got sued by Kraftwerk (I’m not sure if these two things are related). Eventually the album was completed and released via Tenement Records last year, when, I’m sorry to say, it completely passed me by until a few weeks ago.

Thankfully it did eventually make its way into my consciousness (via, for the second time this week, the Song, By Toad podcast), because it’s a very good album indeed. It’s filled with well-crafted songs and wry, engaging lyrics. You can download it for a fiver via Bandcamp, and you can listen to the aforementioned ‘Real Me Take Speed’ here: