Black Grape 'It’s Great When You’re Straight…Yeah' LP
Black Grape's debut, It's Great When You're Straight...Yeah, is a surreal, funky, profane, and perversely joyous album, overflowing with casual eclecticism and giddy humour. Working with a band that is looser and grittier than the Mondays, Shaun Ryder sounds reinvigorated, creating bizarre rhymes that tie together junk culture, drug lingo, literary references, and utter nonsense. Ryder's lyrics have always been freewheelingly impenetrable, but this is now working with Kermit, a rapper that is the equal of his skills.
Even better, the music has deep grooves and catchy pop hooks that come straight out of left field. From the blaring harmonica of the triumphant "Reverend Black Grape" and the trippy sitars of "In the Name of the Father" to the seedy, rolling "Shake Your Money" and the stinging guitars of "Tramazi Parti", It's Great is filled with music that goes in unconventional directions without ever sounding forced.
Not only is It's Great When You're Straight a triumphant return for Ryder and his sidekick Bez, it is the first album they have ever recorded that justifies all of the hype.