Photo: James Brown

Yard Act take a sardonic swipe at British bores on “Fixer Upper”

Leeds band Yard Act made an impressive introduction with their debut single “The Trapper’s Pelts” back in April, and today they follow it up with hilariously cutting new single “Fixer Upper”. Singer James Smith takes on the character of ‘Graeme’, about whom he explains:

“Graeme was inspired by an amalgamation of people who lived on my street growing up. I think everyone knows a Graeme, maybe a neighbour or an uncle… sorry if he’s your dad. Not  a bad man at heart, he just sincerely believes he’s from a country and generation that achieved the apex of everything so therefore can’t ever be wrong about anything.”

“Fixer Upper” begins with James Smith, in the shoes of Graeme, knocking on the door of one of his new neighbours, saying he got some post for the old owner of the second home he’s just bought: “I don’t know how to pronounce their name / I don’t think they were around here, y’know?” From there, he unbidden unloads details about his plans for his new abode (“yeah, that big old thing over the road”): prosecco o’clock posters, knocking through the kitchen wall – “it’s a fixer upper” he keeps repeating, as if this makes him seem like a normal person. Along the way he drops in plenty of other comments that are supposed to make him seem more interesting; he has a Rover, he didn’t go to university, he won’t pay the builders until the work is done – “no one pulls a fast one on Graeme!” Yard Act deliver this speech over sharp and rhythmic post-punk, never obscuring or over-emphasising the words, just allowing him to hoist himself by his own petard – and it’s delicious.

You can listen to “Fixer Upper” on streaming platforms or below.

“Fixer Upper” is out today via the band’s own label Zen F.C..You can find Yard Act on Bandcamp, Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.