The funky, dancefloor-friendly title track (also the lead single) goes a long way toward reviving such nostalgia, albeit with a fresh and contemporary edge, thanks to De Banzie’s solid percussion and Robertson’s reflexive, rolling basslines underpinning Murray’s retro-filtered guitar licks and Osborne’s impassioned lyrical refrain (“My flashback’s in super-8/Every frame has a picture of you”). Destined to soundtrack countless indie club nights across the country, Super 8 Flashback is a bona fide smash-hit in the waiting.
Blitzing into view at a furious pace, the unrelenting The Long Fall possesses all the hallmarks of a future chart topper; duelling guitar riffs, indefatigable ticker-tape drumming, catchy call-and-response lyrics and an irresistibly tight and boppy punk-rock structure. Other highlights include the rocking Junction and melodic Warpaint, which act as calling cards for Osborne’s virtuoso guitar work (think Page, Clapton, Hendrix), while Sally manages to reconcile the disparate elements of funk, disco and soul before climaxing in a thrilling crescendo.
For those encountering the band for the first time, the seeds of Kung Fu Academy were sown while all four members studied music at Napier University. Initially thrust together by their teacher in a kismet act of serendipity for a random, one-off performance, Osborne, Murray, Robertson and De Banzie decided to act upon their undeniable chemistry and pursue their dreams of rock and roll stardom outside the realm of higher education. Their unique and memorable moniker is inspired by an in-joke around the time the boys parted ways with their original frontman, claiming they were attending kung-fu lessons while secretly rehearsing.
Proudly admitting to having played more gigs than rehearsals, Kung Fu Academy has rightly established a reputation as a formidable live act. And with tracks as strong as those on Super 8 Flashback, these Edinburgh upstarts look set to go from strength to strength in 2013.
Super 8 Flashback is released on Whimsical Records – April 15th 2013.