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Aqualassie and the Sky Pumas ‘Slightly Ta Da’ – Review

Band Members

Tom (guitaring, shouting)
Neal (bassing, screaming)
Barnie (drummering, squealing)


Hailsham Wives
Secure in Flames
Beast Follow Man Follow Man Follow Man Follow Beast
Our Master Says
Demon Run
Rodeo Double Six
Post-Fag Era
Tortoise Jeesus

Where to buy:


Released: Out Now


Although the Sky Puma chaps have their tongues firmly planted in their cheeks, this does not mean that their music should be ignored…oh no.  Formed ten years ago, the East Sussex based band is truly a hidden gem of crazy ingeniousness.  Weird divine, is one of my favourite terms when describing Aqualassie and their vivid works of musical art, painting pictures of brightly coloured mayhem across the minds eye.

With eight tracks at a total 17 minutes long, Aqualassie could give the Ramones a post punk/post rock run for their money, but the rich majesty of this album seems all the tastier condensed in to delicious snack bite chunks.

The opening track ‘Hailsham Wives’ (one of my personal favourites) has a feeling of foreboding running throughout. Harmonies and call to action from all band members throughout make this a great introduction to the album.

‘Secure in Flames’ was, so the band tell me, inspired by both The Police and Thin Lizzy, garage indie rock at its best, it has been picked up this week and played on BBC East Sussex.

‘Beast Follow Man Follow Man Follow Man Follow Beast’ was lyrically inspired by a trip to a popular high street health food store. The band stated to me that there is some screaming at the end which was, they believe, not theirs, and remains to this day a freakish unexplained accident (those little rascals are such tricksters). This is manically perfect as you can get!

‘Our Master Says’ (another favourite of moi) resulted from reading too many successive novels set in nightmarish dystopian futures. (and then, as luck would have it, we got to live in one for real!)  the dirty guitar, driving drum beat and beautiful liquid vocals make this a stand out track for me.

‘Rodeo Double Six’ echoes of 80’s memories of my post punk youth and has the haunting chords that will stay with you for quite a while! This has the working cogs of a lean, mean Indie machine.

‘Demon Run’ was written for the top grossing horror film ‘The Nun’…and it shows! This track really does bring panic to the grisly disco and is relentless in its execution.

‘Post-Fag Era’ is the musical gateway from the bands previous albums and was originally a follow up to ‘Brain Fag’ (which was a song about mental collapse from their second album).  The originally the lyrical idea was that the song would represent subsequent rebirth/recovery but it ended up becoming a bit like a tacky Patrick Bateman monologue (minus the grisly stuff). Some vocals were also lost and never recovered due to factors. iTunes deemed the original title explicit, unfortunately.

‘Tortoise Jeesus’ (another of my fav’s) has an obvious Pixies influence and that superb sounding old school Californian guitar sound. A shout as to go out to the exceptional drumming from Barney…he simply kicks ass.

From tracks written for a major movie to highlighted songs on the radio, this sensational smorgas board of punk, indie and rock has been ticking all the right boxes across the spectrum.  The craziness and fun aspects to ‘Slightly Ta Da’ are not flippant (although let’s be honest we could all do with a laugh at the moment), but tinged with a seriousness too.

So, if you fancy dipping your toes into the world of Aqualassie and the Sky Pumas you are in for a delightfully tantalising treat that will keep your head banging, feet tapping and face smiling!

I give this a grungy garage, rock n roll, tongue in cheek;

Score 10 out of 10

Reviewed by Francijn Suermondt









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