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Baked a La Who?

I’m embarrassed to say that that I’ve been listening and loving the music, called ska, right now, cause I heard the name Baked A La Ska just a week ago. They refer to themselves as the “heavy heavy sound” of Manchester, a super charged 11-headed ska monster on a rampage through the dance floors of the UK, leaving a trail of skanked out bodies in their wake. Being guilty for starting this band is their keyboardist - Mr. John Ellis. The lead singers are three and again I’ll quote – “an un-holy trio of singers: Frank “The Skank”, Tommy Robot and Kuntri Ranks” as they call themselves. As they are mixing the sounds of harmonica, keyboards, alto/baritone and tenor/soprano saxes, trombone, double bass, guitars and drums, no one can deny their music is quite the eclectic one.
This goes and for their second album – everything, but conventional. While I was listening to “Just desserts” the first time I though “Wow, what did I just listen to?” Three different voices, a really big mixture of instruments, Jamaican beats, original ska, psychedelic funk, to which you can dance? And covers of songs, which I hated, when I was little – somehow I liked them now. No chance. Mind-blowing and silly, eccentric.
I had to listen to it a second time, one was just not enough. Somehow when I heard the opening song “Alien” I thought, that I’m listening to just another band, that has just ran out of originality. And, oh, what a shock went through my body, when I realized they are not. I felt like I was watching the beginning of a sci-fi movie with a lot of colours. And thanks God the second of the playlist was “Lil has gone to Paris”, cause it took me out of my trance and made me want to dance. In my room. Alone. I don’t believe that such a big band manage to keep the balance. The covers of “Abraskadabra” (originally – “Abracadabra” by Steve Miller Band, but the change in the name as the words in the chorus), the loved of all of the children “Trust in me” and not my favourite one – “Toxic” by Britney Spears, which is now fabulous and the living proof that everything can be changed to good with a little bit of ska in it. The original ones “Who shot the Milkman?” and “Romeo”, on the other hand, sound like they are telling a story, surrounded by a really great music and you’re just obligated to listen. Moreover, every single one of songs in the album “Just desserts” has actual lyrics. We are used to listening In the genre about smoking and drinking, but here is a little bit different. I loved that.
To conclude, I’m never going to regret putting this album in my playing a week ago, cause it’s probably the most original thing I have heard from months and you can feel the energy, coming out of the songs, the vocals, the instruments themselves. While listening, I had a vivid image of everything in my mind and not everyone can achieve that. And Frank “The Skank” and company know how to do it.

Writer: Aleksandra Lupova
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