ARAB STRAP Monday At The Hug & Pint (Matador) Rating: NNNN Rating: NNNN
Beauty isn't a word you'd normally associate with miserable bastards like Arab Strap. The Scottish duo has made a career out of moaning eloquently about failed ambition and relationships that end in tears and a ball of fire. It's harsh and pathetic, not exactly the kind of music you'd expect to get all dressed up. On Monday At The Hug & Pint, Aidan Moffat's bleak, sandpaper-dry commentary on the ass end of life remains, particularly on the charmingly titled Mogwai-esque Fucking Little Bastards. The beauty comes from multi-instrumentalist Malcolm Middleton, who expands the Strap's background noise to include waves of strings, bagpipes and proper pop songs. It's flavoured bile, if such a thing's possible.