Sure there is an elephant in the room but to get through this album you’re going to have to park that particular beast and just listen to the record a few times purely on its own merit. Sure Pete was/is a huge part of what made Buzzcocks what they were and that element is no longer there. However, Steve is also a massive part of the equation and he is very much still here and on that basis, he has every right to continue under the name Buzzcocks. So, on that note welcome ladies and gentlemen to my five penneth worth on the brand spanking new Buzzcocks record ‘Sonics In The Soul’.
The record was proceeded by a very nice 10″ EP that contained the opening salvo of ‘Senses Out Of Control’. Now, Buzzcocks had two singers and for me two very different styles there was on the one hand Pete’s pop melodies in contrast to Steves’s more aggressive style more confrontational style so if I were to describe ‘Senses Out Of Control’ as a Steve song for the purposes of this review then you should have a decent idea of where I’m coming from. It’s a banger of an opening track with that Buzzsaw riff thrashing away all downstrokes towards the melodic chorus. It’s a call to arms and with some neat walking bass lines going on under the riff it’s getting multiple plays here after I “got it” and it’s a fine blast of fuck you from the legend that is Steve Diggle.
Are we sitting comfortably? ‘Manchester Rain’ is another uptempo blast but this time with a tip of the hat to Shelley with a nice hook on that lead guitar. It was one of those instant tunes that grabbed me from the first play. Loving the guitar work throughout from the shimmering effect to that one string lick that we all associate with Buzzcocks.
What do I get? Well, I get an album that has a whole bunch of excellent tunes and as I went into this with an open mind I feel I’ve been rewarded tenfold. What a great record from Steve, Chris and Danny – it’s always been all about the music and this record is a worthy contender. Buzzcocks – I love ’em.
Author: Dom Daley