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Consistent Brilliance: The Little Murders’ Hi-Fab!

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When describing herself, Sylvia Plath once said, “A skeptic, I would ask for consistency first of all.”

If the late poet had ever come across the Little Murders, she wouldn’t have to ask for much more.

By far, one of the most consistently brilliant bands on the planet, the Australian outfit checks in on every album with a fiery brand of mod-pop that comes with swagger, snarl and heart. Their new album Hi-Fab! is no exception–it’s a ferociously played set that’s enlivening, energizing and way beyond cool.

Singer Rob Griffiths wraps his syllables around chords with punk rock smarts, but he takes the corners so smoothly, it brings to mind everyone from Paul Weller to Chris Bailey of The Saints. “24 Hours To London” is a bright little blast of pop perfection; “Last Bus Home” is winningly punchy and “All The Money In The World” brings to mind the late ’70s work of The Kinks.

Elsewhere, “Real Thing” bangs lustily away, “So Bad” is imploringly soulful and “Out Of Time” sounds like an updated version of The Jam’s “All Around The World.”

Hard to pick favorites here, but it’s also hard not to side with “I Love The Chemicals,” which is, undoubtedly one of the most sublime musical moments you’re likely to ever run into. A four-minute clinic of harmony, hook and groovy bliss, Griffiths promises, “I’ll burn down everything for you.” It’s such an unguarded, honest and soul-laid-bare moment, the effect is instantly crushing.

Were we still making mix tapes, the inclusion of this one would get you the object of your affection, for sure.

Every record by this Melbourne outfit offers a wealth of riches to choose from and Hi-Fab! not only does just that, it proves that Griffiths’ quiver seems to be populated by an infinite number of pop arrows.

And in an uncertain world, it’s nice to be able to count on that.