Buster Shuffle - Do Nothing

12 songs
35:09 minutes
***** ****
People Like You


One of my personal musical highlights last year was without a doubt the re-release of the hardly noticed 2009 debut album Our Night Out by British cockney ska band Buster Shuffle. I was obviously curious if the Londoners were able to keep up with their second record. It can be said from the start that not much has changed, but in this case this is certainly no case for complaint.

Jet Baker, who is still in charge of the vocals, piano and songwriting, definitely knows his trade and is able to reduce his songs to the essential without giving up any of their geniality. Especially the happily tinkling piano parts are truly something else. The music is never really complicated, but so incredibly catchy that it’s impossible to sit still while listening. His British accent furthermore enhances the uniqueness of the band’s trademark sound.

The mix of rock, ska, jazz and swing has a blissfully carefree feeling that is just total fun. The Kinks and Madness seem to be the biggest influences here, but occasionally others have left their traces too. The two minute short Around Here for instance could also have come from Chumbawamba. The great English Way reminds me a little of Paul Weller. Only Elvis vs. Wag, for which the band even made a video clip, doesn’t really agree with me. The remaining eleven songs make up for that though, and beg to be listened to again and again. On the final track Come In, the band even surprises with a fast pace that I wouldn’t have expected from them.

On Do Nothing, just like on its predecessor, Buster Shuffle offer huge doses of cheerfulness. This is the kind of music that would feel great in a live pub setting. The short running time may disappoint a little, but then you will just have to push the repeat button. I can’t imagine Do Nothing ever growing old.

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