I felt I was the main character in a modern version of Alice In Wonderland. On receiving an electronic file labled “Try Me“, there was only one thing to do; take a deep breath, close my eyes and dive in.
The subsquent trip that Bristol based duo Try Me (with the stage names of Hector Boogieman and Bendy Wendy), took me on was a wild journey that Lewis Carroll wouldn’t have understood. A maze of sound with a jaunty, funky piece of music which reminded me a little of the likes of Confidence Man and The Scissor Sisters and a sprinkle of the angel dust of the mighty Gorrilaz melded in.
The band accurately describe their sound as disco punk. They showcase a mix of light hearted boogie sounds packed full of an infectious silliness and then mix in an aggressive edge with some intensely delivered vocals from both Hector and Wendy.
The lyrics on the main event on the 2 track EP, a track called Bombastic, reflects the current condition of youth twisting themselves to precisely specify their gender and sexuality. The bounce line in the song is, “all the he’s, and the she’s or all the people inbetween”. Meanwhile Wendy asserts the authority of women: “Dont you ever ever tell me what to do!”. This song has a huge power but is dressed up as an incongruous bouncy bit of disco.
I adore this sense of inclusion and recognition although I take a simple view. I have some very masculine traits, but when I have a fancy to paint my fat man toenails purple then that’s how they end up. Life and sexuality is a pick n mix smorgasbord; don’t deny yourself something at the other side of the platter if the fancy takes.
The quirky male and female vocals of Bendy Wendy and Hector are winning and charming. There’s a good spiky vibe with this band and its totally about fun and funk but with a serious edge. I even got a little heady and thought of Haysi Fantayzee and their legendary bit of high 1980’s serious fun John Wayne is Big Leggy (this song was a statement about how indigenous tribes were dealt with by the colonists in the US).
The second track on the EP Girl/Boy also explores that gender question with a ghost of a song with a grand musical vibe harking back to the heyday of the Hollywood Musicals. You can say what you like about Try Me but they are never boring or predictable.
*Images taken from the band’s social media…