Tom Vek is set to release a brand new album on June 9th via Moshi Moshi Records. Over the course of his decade-long career Tom Vek has forged a reputation as one of London's most enigmatic and exciting musicians. Breaking on to the scene with the attitude-spiked We Have Sound (2005), Vek channelled his homegrown musical prowess into a bastion of mid-noughties electronic punk rock rebellion. His long awaited follow-up, Leisure Seizure (2011), was less raw but no less impactful. Now mixing the expertise learned from both, his newest offering, Luck is set to be Vek's biggest and most daring album release to date.
Drawing on the modern anxiety of finding your place in a world saturated by information, Luck plunges the personal to deliver tracks that are sincere, angry and poignant. Sherman (Animals in the Jungle) - a searing comment on our state of moral ambivalence inspired by Tom Wolfe's novel, The Bonfire of the Vanities - delivers a bold chord sequence and a bass-line of such grandiose proportions as to rival Kanye, spliced with synth motifs reminiscent of the opening to Kiss by Prince. Angry funk, for the lost generation compelled to head bang in unison to its intoxicating repetition. Elsewhere Broke is a rebel rousing march led by a more melodic vocal from Vek and the album's undisputed pop forerunner; while Trying to Do Better delivers a dreamlike cacophony of cymbal crashes and electronic accents of the likes of Sonic Youth. Perhaps the most quintessential offering comes in the shape of Vek's open message to the Internet age, Pushing your Luck - a droning, moody, repetitive track that delivers that dead-pan vocal over a bass-line that builds to dance-floor proportions.
As ever, Vek delivers an album that eludes straightforward definition. The ?garage rock for the pro-tools generation' as he puts it, is alive and well, only now it is met with the most ostentatious production and some of the biggest beats of Vek's career. Just as you want to describe Luck as the sardonic outpouring of a man articulating the disillusionment of a generation, he throws the curve ball of The Girl You Wouldn't Leave for any Girl - an unwieldy title that sits gloriously at odds with the rest of the album.
Consisting of one repeated sentence, a vocal and a guitar, the pared down, minimalist achievement artfully encapsulates an age-old story of love. ?There's noise everywhere', Vek tells us, but with enough force we might return to a place of truth. Luck is the magnificent offering from an artist who has achieved the rare feat of preserving the seduction of youthful rebellion and marrying it with experience. It's big, angry and impossible to ignore.
Tom Vek will play a London show, Weds June 11th at XOYO, Paris Flèche D'or on Thurs June 12th and Latitude Festival.
Photo by Sonia Melot