With the Scissor Sisters fourth studio album Magic Hour, it most certainly is the absolute truth; that if it isn’t broken then why bother getting the decorators round to spruce up the place.
Scissor Sisters have been reduced to a four piece for a couple of albums now but the sound and disco sure fire hits have not diminished, if anything, on Magic Hour the drive that propelled the band forward and suffered slightly on Tah-Dah has gained more momentum. The rhythms and insanely likeable underlying beats that pervade the songs mean they thrust the music into another level that the group’s first hit of Laura suggested they would eventually attain.
The four members of Scissor Sisters equip themselves incredibly well on the album and the vocal balance of Jake Shears and Ana Matronic that runs through the heart of the group is as good as it has been since they burst onto the scene. The music may be dance, it may have allusions of splendid grandeur to hit the heights of songs by the Bee Gees in places but there really is nothing like this band when in full dynamic flow.
Word of warning if you’re not a fan of the musical The Rocky Horror Show then it’s best to avoid the song Let’s Have A Kiki. Once you listen to it, it will be downright impossible to ever erase it from your mind. It will forever haunt you as you struggle to put it into the sequence of songs that parade like a glammed up extra trying to find a place to live and be loved. It may be cliché ridden, certainly in the armoury of the Scissor Sisters but if it doesn’t have you reaching for the inlay card to see what influence Tim Curry has on it then there is no hope for you.
Shady Love has the perfect riposte to the idea of wannabe rap stars; the irony may be lost on some but the biting lyrics have just enough subtly to make them question if the song really is making them out to be fools or are they just trying to attempt something that’s best well left alone. In this colourful song, the Scissor Sisters would seem to have the edge on the rap world.
The album is littered with little pearls, gems that show that the Scissor Sisters are more than capable of appealing across a wide spectrum of music lovers. Songs such as Self Control and The Secret Life of Letters may be pure dance and strangely well-crafted ballad but the lyrics are to take hold and keep close, cherish and dance to.
Magic Hour brings the Scissor Sister back with a bang.
Ian D. Hall