Monday, November 16, 2009

Noughties By Nature #63: Primal Scream - Accelerator

Even Primal Scream's better albums follow certain worrying protocols. The most dubious of all is the Trad Rock Track: that throwaway, three-chord-boogie which appears on every release, and that has been responsible for some of the band's most facile moments.

The exception to this rule was inevitably on 2000's XTRMNTR, an album of such abrasive, corrosive, industrial brilliance that even a song which relied on the most generic of rock templates was warped into one light-speed, future-shock slab: Accelerator.

Accelerator begins at a hundred miles an hour and keeps rushing faster and faster until the band itself can't keep up with the relentless pace. Even then, Bobby Gillespie, lost in the white-noise blizzard, urges them on: “Into the future! Into the future! C'mon! C'mon! Hit the accelerator!” before the song folds, tears and collapses into a warm splat of guitar noise as the band drop into a black hole of their own furious manufacture.

Inexorably forward-facing, and almost too brutally momentous for its own good, Accelerator is built for speed, not comfort, power, not precision; the triumph of gut feeling over sense. The only thought that went into the mix was to decide just how many faders to push up to the very top.

Accelerator was the last release from the dying Creation records - a final wry and defiantly rock 'n' roll gesture from Alan McGee. The song that gave us the thrilling future, the discarded past and tinnitus.
Joe Sparrow

[Album: XTRMNTR]

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