Screaming Maldini - Screaming Maldini and the Kookaburra
Words: Gareth O’Malley
Fans of the sadly-departed Situationists, rejoice! The band may have folded a long time ago (nine months ago to be precise, but it feels longer), but Screaming Maldini have risen phoenix-like from the ashes. They are a sextet, led by ex-Situationist Nick Maldini, feature five (count ‘em) vocalists, and use some brass instruments like trumpets and horns.
It’s already sounding a world away from Nick’s former band, right? Well, their recorded output would dispel such thoughts: there are remnants of Situationists here, definitely - not least in such things like the band’s ear for melody and their use of unusual time signatures (this EP is officially a 4/4-free zone).
Otherwise, though, this is a different proposition, and thankfully, it’s every bit as good as any Situationists material. The band had a keen sense of quality control, bordering on perfectionism - there’s another thing that’s still present.
Referencing everything from Mew to Frank Zappa, ‘Screaming Maldini and the Kookaburra’ is an absolute gem. The group have given us two of the songs of the year thus far, in ‘Secret Sounds’ and the superlative ‘I Know That You Know That I Would Wipe The Snowflake From Your Eye’. The former is particularly reminiscent of Situationists, with its assertive rhythm section and insect-like guitars. It’s also business as usual in the chorus department. The latter is a more laid-back affair for the most part, before exploding half-way through as a fantastic brass riff (never thought I’d be using those two words one after the other to be honest) comes in.
Add to this the anthemic ‘The Extraordinary’, the decidedly jazzy ‘The Albatross’ and the frenetic closer ‘Miniatures’ (which also features what could only be called a reggae section), and you have an EP that gets things off to the best of starts, just as ‘This City Holds Us All’ did. Good things lie ahead for Screaming Maldini, make no mistake.