100 gecs 10,000 gecs Atlantic
Imagine there was a way of plugging into a sunrise and turning its warm, transcendent glow into sound. Now imagine that beautiful dawn chorus being cut clean through by a guitar riff that sounds like something from a Drowning Pool record. You now have the first few seconds of Dumbest Girl Alive, the first song on 100 gecs’ second album, 10,000 gecs. “If you think I’m stupid now/ You should see me when I’m high,” Laura Les sings through a vocoder on the opening refrain. Strap in, baby: you’re in gecs country now.
As the title suggests, this is an amped-up dose of the inventiveness, irreverence and mimicry that frequently sees Les and Dylan Brady hailed as two of the most singular musical minds of their generation. Known for careening around musical styles so hard that they have come to be prime custodians of the hyperpop style first introduced by PC Music, album two sees the gecs zooming in slightly, embracing the sounds of 2000s pop-punk and its associated genres, in particular – unsurprising considering their past link-ups with groups like 3OH!3 and Linkin Park.
@100gecs Dumbest girl alive music video out now #100gecs ♬ Dumbest Girl Alive – 100 gecs
Billy Knows Jamie has flecks of the eternal rock club anthem Numb/Encore, while Hollywood Baby leads with the kind of crude bass riff and crashing symbols that make you think of music videos filmed in skate bowls. And if you thought we’d successfully avoided a ska revival, 100 gecs – on the tracks Frog on the Floor and I Got My Tooth Removed – have got news for you: firstly, they’re bringing it back, and secondly, they’re going to make you love it.
Because ultimately, that is 100 gecs’ greatest gift: they squirrel away references, push them through a meat grinder, and emerge with combinations so bizarre as to be instantly laughable. But soon you realise that the joke is on you because of how well each mish-mash works every time. The track One Million Dollars begins with what sounds like a sample of a satnav, and ends up evoking both Crystal Castles and Red Hot Chili Peppers. There’s nothing you can do, upon listening to 10,000 gecs, but surrender to having just as much fun as Brady and Les are. 100 gecs’ second record has done it again: 2 Gecs, 2 Furious, 2 Genius.