This week I’m going to give something back to my dearly departed homeland for my Friday Tunes selection. ‘I Am Brazil’ is the third album from Dublin-based instrumental post-rock band The Redneck Manifesto. Released back in 2004 on Trust Me I’m A Thief records, the album holds a lot of memories for me. I was lucky enough to play with the Rednecks on quite a few occasions with my old band around the time of this album’s release and was never anything less than blown away by their live shows. It sure made me want to go back to the drawing board with my meat and potatoes guitar work, that’s for sure.
‘Instrumental post-rock’ can be quite a hard sell at the best of times, but I think this album has a lot of heart and warmth to it. With this LP you’re not getting that tried-and-tested ‘quiet bit to loud bit’ song structures that bands like Mogwai have perfected over the years; nor are you getting that clinical math-rock precision that bands like Don Caballero excel at. ‘I Am Brazil’ instead has a really relaxed vibe to it, with almost jazz-like dual guitars complemented by some tight bass-work by Richie Egan (also of JAPE). Add in some small bits of electronic influences and the whole album comes together quite nicely. Sure, there are tracks where some of that heavy guitar muscle is flexed (track 8 ‘Who Knows?’), but on the whole this is a really breezy affair.
The Redneck Manifesto was always the band we aspired to be growing up. Dudes seemed to have it sorted – just able to operate quietly on their own terms and on their own label, playing to packed crowds when they wanted both in Ireland and abroad without ever having to whore themselves out or jump on the latest bandwagon. I remember in the pre-Facebook days just being blown away by the fact they rustled together a US tour off the back of being featured on BMX video soundtracks. The band would follow up this album with the ‘Friendship’ LP that was released in 2010 and it's also worth checking out. With band members spread between Ireland and Sweden, the recorded and live output ain’t as regular these days, but it’s always worth keeping an ear open for when they resurface again.
Listen to ‘I Am Brazil’ HERE
Check out more from The Redneck Manifesto HERE