I have to admit that, despite my fondness for obscure bands, The Brainiac 5 had passed me by completely and it was therefore something of a surprise to find that they had reformed and this album – “We’re Ready” – marks a period of musical activity that exceeds their past output.
A lot of years have passed since the days of punk and it would seem that The Brainiac 5 continue to march to the sound of their own drum with their curious punk meet psychedelic rambling sound seeming as out of place as it probably did back when they were young. Perhaps unsurprisingly, the songs on this album often seem at odds with themselves with these extended extemporisations punctuated with the kind of short sharp, and inevitably guitar powered, shocks that made the charts interesting in 1977.
It is, however, reasonable to suppose that there are many people out there with memories of that time and place who may find that these songs remind them of those better times. That said, even those born well after those halcyon days will find guest vocalist Jessie Pie's sultry voice more than enough reason to take “She’s Free” – apparently a reworking of their best known song “Trotsky” – to their hearts and thus give the band a new audience.
Will “We’re Ready!” lift The Brainiac 5 from obscurity? Probably not but, at the very least, they have proved that they aren’t the kind of band that gives up easily.