By Crack In The Sun
Firstly I will say I am not a huge fan of new punk bands but somehow after seeing these guys live in some place in Northwich the other night the energy and humour onstage from these Mansfield lads compelled me to grab a hold of one of their free CDs which humorously had several cut-outs of Jim Bowen (one complete with a doll of Bully!) on the cover along with... wait for it... fax machines!!! Once you look at the back cover it gets a little less tasteful with the picture of a guy vomiting on another guy but hey! They are a punk band need I say anything else?
The first track 'Portrait of Non-Sustainability' sets off as a fast paced power-punk number with an extremely tight drummer who's continuous whirlwind of the 'dum dum chi' drum beat instantly reminds me of earlier NOFX material, which is personally, not my cup of PG tips but certainly is tight and well produced enough to be listenable and pleasant on the ears.
The singer's voice is kind of shrill and weak for a scream but is well in-tune for most of the time and has that slight gratiness that does not get too much for the ear. Just as I am getting quite fond of the song it abruptly ends which disappoints me slightly then it quickly blurts out into the next song 'Another Cause fought by the Righteous' which just seems a slowed down and more missable version of the first one... Next track please... 'Black Hole' an obvious attempt at more pop-rock kind of punk, resembling that of early 90's Green Day numbers which is yet another passable track.
Oh my goodness! Now this has got my attention. After getting slightly bored of the CD at this moment in time an outbreak of tight funky reggae blurts out of my speakers in the form of 'Salvation Song' and pricks up my ears (metaphorically speaking!) with the singer almost being successful in hitting some real good vocal melodies, this is only a minor criticism because I think the guy has potential to improve. But the background harmonies compliment to it making the melody a lot stronger.
Out comes the last song.
Unlike most shitty recordings I hear of young punk regurtitators, these guys seem a lot more experienced as punk rockers than their younger punk comrades, yet still retain their humour and energy. Okay so they are never going to be huge, but this is definately a CD that could be kept in your collection just to pull out at a party for people to have a good old dance to, or something to cruise along to in your Corsa. The production itself is good, everything comes through clear. With a bit more experience maybe, and some developing in the songwriting and improvement in the vocals (that are not bad, just need more range I think) and certainly a concentration on developing a more unique style instead of cloning most of their tracks but just changing the speed and chords! I think this band are a cool band to have playing at a party or on a fun night out.
Hope to hear some more from them soon, but for now, work hard guys and good luck with the next CD.