By four day Hombre
For a band that took about 7 years to produce their brilliant debut album it may be a bit surprising to find them knocking out a follow-up so soon. In fact the very essence of this record is the speed with which the band turned it round, writing and recording 7 songs from scratch in 7 days. There must have been nose bleeds all over the studio as four day Hombre reached new heights of efficiency. However the reason Experiments In Living was so polished is because it had been cooking on a low heat for so long, it was most definitely all wheat and no chaff. Fight Death on the other hand suffers greatly for the speed of its delivery.
Hindsight is a wonderful thing but to a musician it's a curse, constantly looking back at previous recordings thinking "I wish I'd done that differently". So when you record and more importantly write a set of songs in such a short space of time you play straight into hindsight's hands. Some ideas work and fans of the FDH sound won't be disappointed as nothing on the face of it strays away from EIL. But as a whole there is nothing that leaps of the page. The electronic beats of "Roll up Your Sleeves" are a neat touch and the rocking front of "Is It Any Wonder?" is a refreshing break from the constant breathiness of lead singer Ash, while "Teach Someone" finds the band on slightly noisier territory than normal. In fact it is the intensive close mic and heavy breathing vocals that get a bit wearing and ultimately leave this feeling like a clever set of b-sides or cast offs that didn't fit the bill for the album. Perhaps with time and honing these songs would have evolved to something more and who's to say they won't but as an experiment in writing this was no great follow up to Experiments In Living.