Footprints in the Custard is an unsigned UK band from Manchester. Formed by a group of bored college students in 2006 they play an interesting blend of punk and metal that is truly an abomination. I mean that in the best possible way. This is a blight on anything that is good and right and proper, and I think that is exactly what they want it to be. It makes me think this is what it would sound like if G.G. Allin joined The Dead Milkmen and wrote metal songs. This stuff is bizarre, it’s kind of schizophrenic.
These guys are really hard to pin down; the styles just keep changing as the songs go along. “The Curse” has a guitar part that reminds me of Bob Seger’s “Turn the Page” or something like that. They also seem to have an obsession with Hayley Williams of Paramore (as evidenced by the track “Things I Would Do Sexually to Hayley Williams.”)
The album, which sounds pretty good other than sometimes it has a slightly distant quality that makes it sound like it’s actually playing in the next room, contains a variety of styles. It has a crusty punk sound, a metal sound, a poppy sound, and even some goth-like piano (and some Sisters of Mercy-like breathy vocals). While I wouldn’t call them technical, they do seem to have a grasp on playing and mixing different styles competently. They can turn on a dime and change a style immediately, which rather reminds me of local band Polkadot Cadaver, though perhaps with a bad case of ADD.
The songs are built to offend, covering date rape, STDs and the aforementioned defilement of Hayley Williams. But once you get past the lyrics and all the style changes this is actually a pretty interesting album. I can say with confidence that I have not heard anything quite like this before and the fact that they aren’t just making noise lends a little credibility to the tongue-in-cheek obscenity. If they were just going for shock value and not caring at all about the music I wouldn’t like them very much, but it sounds like they spent just as much time on the music as they did on writing silly lyrics, so I can get behind them.
I don’t expect this is something I’ll listen to all the time, but it is worth checking out. Where will they take this next? And will the world be ready for it?