Brighton art-rockers, ChopChop, release their debut album, Everything Looks So Real, via brand new label, Rose Hill Records, based at cult local venue The Rose Hill.
ChopChop are a defiantly borderless, outward-looking project. ChopChop throw a range of musical and lyrical ingredients and genres into the pot: punk, jazz, prog, electronica, soundscapes, spoken word, classic literature, philosophy and poetry – the works. ChopChop create quickly – recording their jams and later cutting, splicing and sticking parts together back in the studio. ChopChop are familiar and yet just out of reach; awkward and yet gregarious – five people cooking from organic scraps and serving it up with lashings of passion and charisma both on record and live.
Many of the songs bubble with the uneasiness of the times we are living in, the feeling of being at a crossroads, individually, as groups and as a species. Lifetime and This Is Not Your Home emerged as the Syrian civil war raged and waves of refugees fled. The latter tells two sides of a story: the frenetic post-punk clatter of the first half rails against not belonging and not been allowed to belong; this wail gives way to a stately hymn to humankind employing John Donne’s resonant words. Seeing PJ Harvey reading No Man Is An Island at Glastonbury after the Brexit referendum inspired de Toro to enlist the poem to his own cause.
Lighthouse is an homage to Virginia Woolf’s To The Lighthouse, again balancing hope and melancholy, while What Is The Question? quotes Gertrude Stein’s death-bed musings! Building A House and So Real also interrogate the nature of the human condition, while beguiling the listener as beautiful, epic swathes of alt.jazz-prog invention.
Every piece is brimming with vividity, surprises and creativity; complexity and simplicity; intellect and instinct. With ChopChop, everything *is* so real.