I Wish I Was a Gun
Aisle16 is the UK's top spoken word act. Their last show, Poetry Boyband, was named Time Out Critics' Choice of the year 2005 and entertain audiences at literary readings, comedy clubs and music festivals across the UK and Europe. I Wish I Was A Gun is aisle16's third release on the prestigious (and not at all made up) Aisland label and is their most accomplished to date. The four track EP features a poem from each of the boys with production by Chris Hicks. Despite it's relatively short length - the whole thing clocks in at just over 18 minutes - the EP feels more substantial than previous releases; the ideas running through the tracks feel more fully developed; the vocals are layered and are fitted to the subtly twisted beats more closely than on previous efforts. The sarcastic slinkiness of the opener, Wright's Embrace the Wank, sets a distinctly playful tone which is continued, albeit more ambiguously, by Sutherland's Essex '94: an up-tempo stomper, best described as 'the thinking man's Streets'. Britain's First Paedophile Prime Minister, Stickley's glowering paean to demonisation, sees his 'crack-house Attenborough' delivery set to a backdrop of swooping nursery rhyme loops and can't be listened to after dusk. The finale is Hicks' Silent Pylons, a sepulchral yet skittery eulogy to electricity. Wrap all that in the sinewy artwork of long-time collaborator Samuel W. Ratcliffe and you have that rarest of poetry products: a CD that's heavy on content but still a great listen. Aisle16 have raised the bar for poetry/spoken word in the UK with their multi-media shows Poetry Boyband and mock motivational business seminar Powerpoint. Their first collection, Live From The Hellfire Club was published in 2005, (Egg Box / ISBN: 0-9543920-3-5), with forewords by the Independent's Poet-in-Residence Martin Newell and punk legend John Cooper Clarke. "Highlights of the spoken word scene...hot young talent." The Sunday Times "Poetry has come of age." The Guardian "They do with words what I try and do with art. Some of my favourite poets." Ralph Steadman "Compelling viewing for all inside and outside the corporate equation." Time Out "Young blades in open revolt against consumerism and celebrity. I loved it." The Scotsman 'Very funny. All of it is slickly delivered and tautly choreographed.' The Evening Standard "I refuse to perform with them anymore because they make me look like a cunt." John Cooper Clarke.