For a band who are yet to have any UK hits, release an album or even sign a record deal, New York electro-poppers MEN attracted an impressive crowd at Hoxton Square Bar this Monday. The reason for this was undoubtedly the fact that MEN's androgynous lead singer JD Samson is also part of the iconic riot-grrl trio Le Tigre. Still, any Le Tigre fans who arrived knowing little of MEN's repertoire would certainly not have been disappointed, even if Deceptacon didn't appear on the setlist.
MEN take the Le Tigre sound and ethos, and bring it right up to date with hints of CSS and Tegan and Sara. Anyone who walked into the venue not knowing who MEN were would have simply presumed they'd stumbled upon the latest cool young things. While Le Tigre may have recorded some excellent songs, including a cover the Pointer Sisters' 'I'm So Excited', only a few had appeal outside of their niche market. With the recent electro-pop revival it might just be time for JD (and Johanna, her fellow Le Tigre member and MEN producer) to have a little mainstream success.
The only thing that could hold the band back, although it's a major part of their appeal, is their controversial lyrics. With song titles including Big F*cker and lyrics like "I'm gonna f*ck my friends", MEN probably won't be getting A-listed on Radio 1 any time soon. However, their music sits comfortably alongside trendy up-and-comers such as Chew Lips and Delphic, meaning they're bound to be big hitters on the festival circuit this summer. Perhaps it's time that MEN made a little money from, and got a little recognition for, being so much cooler than everybody else.