Dropping this baby onto the virtual deck and what leaps out in opener “Stop everything” is a sound grounded in the underground, hinting at punk, fuzzed-up rock “ala” the MC5. Does it move towards the new genre that I seem to hearing about everywhere “Action Rock”, I don’t think so, even though this will appeal to anyone with more than an affiliation to the underground. No, it draws on a much richer musical tapestry, but ultimately pinning your ears back and screaming “LISTEN TO ME!!!!!”
Next up “No Money, No Peace”, moves up the intensity, there’s a hint of the much-missed Stiv Bator’s sneer, but blink and you’ll miss it, this ain’t prog in any way shape or form. Moving into “How much will this affect us” and things get a darker heavier feel, that bass run holds you, before the guitar demands your attention, I really like this track it’s a real burner. “Worlds within a world” hits the raw fuzzed up psychedelia of the fuzztones, while at the same time kicking it up the arse, with that incessant punk underpinning. “Language Lesson” comes tearing out of the speakers, that iggy and the stooges madness taking centre stage, this is a blinder, but for once I’d have liked it a bit longer!!, “Slow Shadow”, moves to a very different beat, more commercial? Dare I say? Yup, it would make a cracking single, this just drips fuzzed-out psychedelia, dropping into 13th-floor elevators territory, complete with the space rock exit!
“The Process” kicks in with a tasty Tribal drummed intro, before it takes off and moves you on a very different path, this is rapidly becoming a fave for yours truly. “Strange Melody” again revisits the psychedelic sounds of the sixties, but with an added pop sensibility reminiscent of The Only Ones.
It’s at this point you begin to realize how good an LP this is, crammed full of ideas, honing a musical heritage, taking hints of the past, reimaging them for a current listening audience. I’m starting to drift here but I’m as always thinking about how this will play out live and smiling to myself. Maybe these years Camden Rocks?
“Shark Bait” again grabs you from the start, holding that crossover vibe, hinting at a more commercial line, there’s an almost gothic Guitar underpinning and extra to this track. “Some Colours”, “No Barriers” and “The People I see” maintain the power and intensity, “No Barriers” in particular mixing up the vocal style and again rapidly becoming a favourite, while “The People I see” moving into territories held up by The Ruts.
Finishing up with “For Barbara Dane” an acoustic gem with an underlying message, think The Kinks meet the Subways!!! Before the lp plays out with “The American Empire”, I love this Hardcore blast and what a way to finish up a powerful LP from a band that I’ll look forward to picking up on the live scene, and definitely an LP I’ll be investing in.
Author: Nev Brooks