Tag Archives: album review

Newtown Neurotics — Cognitive Dissidents

Newtown Neurotics

Cognitive Dissidents

Cadiz Music

Street: 10/21/2022  

For over 40 years Newtown Neurotics have sounded the alarm against the perils of political and social annihilation. They have been brilliantly demonstrating this through an uncompromising punk lead ethos. The artists behind this work toward revolution are Steve Drewett, Simon Lomond and Adam Smith.  The result of their efforts is music used as a tool to inform, agitate and organize against the trapping of complacency.  Their new album Cognitive Dissidents builds upon this method. It’s eight tracks seek to rail against submission to ignorance and in turn rally against the civilizational decay of our time.

The opening track “Climate Emergency” captures the sense of urgency celebrated in Newtown Neurotics’ material. It’s a song demanding it’s listener pay attention to the overwhelming environmental crisis facing today’s world. To do this, Newtown Neurotics unapologetically highlight the severity coming from an onslaught of climate breakdown. True, “Climate Emergency” betrays a seriousness and somber tone, but this tune is catchy.

In “Take Your Dirty Hands Off Our Town” Newtown Neurotics profess nostalgic sentiments for their hometown of Harlow, Essex. This song serenades the origins of Harlow New Town after World War Two while seeking to place present importance on the towns community. In this, vocalist Drewett decries the Tory robbing of Harlow’s civic infrastructure and promise. However, he also celebrates his upbringing along with the changes he’s observed over the years. This is drawn from examples of his youth like organizing bands and standing against the National Front. It’s obvious that this is a tune that clearly hits home for Drewett ,and I imagine anyone living in Harlow.

“Hope” is a song rallying the banner of resistance against the idea of impending doom. This track is easily a favorite of mine.  Newtown Neurotics’ “Hope” urges rising together to face today’s uncertainties.  Many of the topics found in Cognitive Dissidents are about candidly singing about today’s modern challenges. “Hope” manages to offer a way forward and more importantly the potential for a way to live. This is via an emphasis of the importance on hope through connection through love and cooperation in our respective communities. It’s refreshing song against a climate of prevailing despair. Thus, this one ought to considered along other punk lead anthems like The Clash’s “London Calling” or Sham 69’s “If The Kids Are United.”

“Dumb” is another favorite on Cognitive Dissidents. This track takes a satirical look at the absurd nature of conspiracy nuts. “Dumb” is sung from the perspective of a wearer of a right-wing tin foil hat. Drewett highlights the themes that define the conspiracy theorists. This includes finding community in the fringe, dismissal of experts and acceptance of a flat earth. Ever clever, Newtown Neurotics poke fun at these dangerous nutters while listing the importance of their emerging threat to sane discourse and living.

Overall, Cognitive Dissidents is a solid album. It’s Newtown Neurotics first album in about 34 years and neatly picks up where they left off in 1988. Not surprisingly, this album is a bit more mature in style and sound. Drewet’s song writing continues with the pressing anger and creative energy of punk.

In Cognitive Dissidents Newtown Neurotics seek to bring sense to this turbulent world and tell it like it is. It’s a sober, straight forward call to action. This is an approach that makes them consistent and among my favorite groups. To be fair, the world’s still chaotic, and maybe even more so than it was in 1988. That said, Newtown Neurotics are here to poignantly light the way. Now pick this up. It’s relevant and must to be played.

For more about Newtown Neurotics, visit them here.

Hard Times — Little Satan 7″

Hard Times

Little Satan

Spaghetty Town Records

Release: 05/06/2022

Hard Times Little Satan is a seemingly one-off diamond in the rough. This EP is a result of boredom and the need to create during the height of the Covid 19 pandemic. This record exudes everything brilliant about the glam-degenerate nature of sleaze infested proto-punk.  It’s not a surprise as it features members from Slick Bags, Desperate Fun and Suicide Generation. They are Sebastian Melmoth, Davide Chessa, Fabio Mongelli, Geoffrey and Paolo Piras.  To top it off, Little Satan was recorded at the New River Music Studios in London, England by Patrice Picard, and was mastered by Jim Diamond.  

This EP is not a record that benefits from low volume. Rather, to fully enjoy this record, the music should only be heard when’s one’s receiver is turned high enough that it’s on the verge of exploding. This is an obvious thing to do upon listening to the title track “Little Satan.” It’s a song that immediately grabs ahold of its listener with a defiant proto-punk adrenaline injection. This is thanks to a fast beat and fuzzed out guitar riffs. It;s the kind of trash glam punk that invokes a nod toward of The Joneses’ but with a style meriting the ferocity of Ex Cult.

In a similar fashion is “Oh Let It Go.” This tune is more in line with snotty glam rock n’ roll. It’s the Hard Times answer for a mover and shaker Think of it along the lines of New York Dolls inspired but, with a rock n’ roll revival aesthetic of the early 1970s. Complete with razer riffs and a strong beat this is a song demand to be danced to. Waste no time to getting rowdy, this is what this music was meant for.

“She Ain’t Here No More” is more on the mellow side record. However, the music picks up with “Do Yo Feel Like Lovin,” This one packs a considerable punch. It’s fast, loud and raucous. “Do You Feel Like Lovin” ends this record on a high note. It might even invite one to sing along to the chorus. Of course this would be helped under the right substantive persuasions.

Little Satan is a record that demands to be heard. This is a creation from a super group of depraved rock n’ rollers. Within it’s grooves are songs of untamed desperation from a deeply uncertain time. It’s music that blasts away notions of stagnation. This thanks to Hard Time’s approach to riotus sleaze glam-punk. Before Little Satan ends up in obscurity, pick it up. If by listening to this the urge to kick something over isn’t apparent, rinse and repeat.  After all, this is the sounds that debauchery is made of. Play it loud.

For more about Hard Times get their record at Spaghetty Town Records or via their Bandcamp!

The Sellwoods — House Rockin’ Party Tonight

The Sellwoods

House Rockin’ Party Tonight

Chaputa Records

Release: 04/29/2022

At last the long awaited LP from The Sellwoods is finally here. It is adequately called House Rockin’ Party Tonight. Within it’s grooves are the caveman stomping sounds reserved for everything delightfully demented about garage punk. Fans of The Incredible Staggers, The Sonics or Miracle Workers will find this record in tune with likeminded savage sounds. So,  it’s not surprising then that House Rockin’ Party Tonight was released via the renowned Chaputa Records. This record is not for the faint hearted. Rather it’s fuzz driven rock n’ roll is for those seeking music akin to the Born Bad compilations.

House Rockin’ Party Tonight kicks off strong with the pounding track “Shakedown.” In pure cave person garage punk fashion this is a song delivering a blow like a blunt club. It has a strong beat, which is extenuated but the prominent use of the organ playing. It’s simple and straight to the point.  In a similar take is “Why.”  Both of these tracks exude the emphasis of playing on the primitive side of garage rock.

Things pick up with “Curse Of The Ramones.” This is a track that edges more on the punk side of garage. Think along the lines of a snotty homage toward the three chord wonders, The Ramones. In contrast “Johnny Needs A Drink” has a Link Wray meeting A Rebel Without A Cause feel to it. It’s the kind of rock n’ roll that borrows off afore mentioned novelty idea by giving it a noticeable b-movie flair.

Much of the strength on House Rockin Party Tonight resides on the b-side. Starting this side off is “Demented Planet.”This track was originally put out on the Demented Planet EP released on June 25, 2021. It’s haunted debauched rock n’ roll at it’s best. This is a song that strikes all the right raunchy chords for untamed garage punk. It’s a feeling brilliantly felt in “Volcano Girl” and the spooky “Down In The Alley.” Both of which is also on the EP.

Another stand out song in this record is “One Eyed Cat.” From start to finish it’s solid, cruising for a bruising music. This is rock n’ roll meant for the simplistic nature of hot rod kicks.It’s a track following in line with the signature nature found in The Sellwoods defiant attitude. Be sure to waste little time by turning the dial red hot to play this one loud.

Among my favorite tracks on House Rockin’ Party Tonight are “The Walk Of Shame” and the cover of “Something Else.” “The Walk Of Shame” is an easy tune to follow. One might guess there may be some prudish societal stigma for leaving a house in the early hours after a passionate affair. The only lyrics are “the walk of shame means nothing.” This comes across as an absolute dismissal against misgiven notions of puritanical shame. If you needed a tune for this kind of meander, then you now have this garage punk anthem for a leisurely, yet self-aware excursion after leaving a bed other than your own. Enjoy!

“Something Else” is tune that ages well. It’s insolent and rebellious approach was arguably perfected by the late Sid Vicious. Now it’s brilliantly done by The Sellwoods. They capture a definitive ’66 garage rock feel by adding the spirit found with a Girls In The Garage comp.. No mistake here, this isn’t a homage to Frank Sinatra, this is rock n’ roll.

The Sellwoods have long chosen which path to follow at the devil’s crossroads. It’s the path of lifelong degenerate rock n’ roll. Now with a host of releases under their belts, they bare House Rockin’ Party Tonight for you to hear. This records boasts the sounds of germinating garage punk demanding to be heard. Top tracks are “Demented Planet,” “The Walk Of Shame” and the cover of “Something Else.” That said, this records in it’s eternity ought to paid attention to. Now, pick up this album.   

For more of The Sellwoods check out their Bandcamp or Facebook!

Fast  Eddy — Take A Look

Fast  Eddy
Take A Look
Spaghetty Town Records
Released:01/21/ 2022

At long last Denver’s notorious rockers Fast Eddy have released their sophomore LP, Take A Look. Within it’s grooves are soul studded sounds of power pop driven rock n’ roll. It’s their debut LP on Spaghetty Town Records and was produced by Tuk Smith (Biters). Admittingly, there are familiar themes of the music for rebels without a cause. However, Take A Look represents an evolution into a refreshed approach to this ageless genre. Not surprising then that this is perfect for the longings of the hopeless leather jacketed romantic of today’s desperate age.

This record starts off strong with the signature track “Take A Look.” This song is groovy to the ears. It kind of reminds of something that The Booze could boast, but with a style distinctly enmeshed in punk twisting with roguish power pop notions. This song sets the tone for the record by playing a sound that fills the room with illuminating brilliance. If one needed something to kick off the day with, “Take A Look” is that track.

Those who got their hands on the Toofer One 7” in 2018, will already be familiar with “Milwaukee.” It’s the kind of tune to eat your heart out with. This song tells the tale of the trappings of a lifestyle of the iconically decadent ,and will resonate with those succumbing to the affections of rock n’ roll. So open a cold one and sing along to the easy to follow chorus. For those still plugging away at three chords with long lost hope, its for you.

Another track following in this vein is “Frankie Died.” Although upbeat, It’s a tragic song about the demise of Frankie. The subject of this song has unfortunately died, and while a tragedy, it doesn’t seem to be a surprise. Those hoisting the banner of rock n’ roll have all known a “Frankie.” Be sure to listen carefully.

On the other “Help Me” displays Fast Eddy’s superb swagger. It’s a kind of soulful song that gives of the feel goods. Listen to this one to conclude the evening on a high note.

Those more comfortable with Fast Eddy’s punk roots need not fear. Tracks like “Hurricane Alley” and “Lost” perfectly capture their signature approach to unabashed punk n’ roll. They are loud and fast. Play these with impunity.

The magic on Take A Look are with tracks “Game of Love” and “Sunflower Bank.” These two tunes demonstrate Fast Eddy’s ability to blend elements of glam, rock n’ roll and punk into something more than typical projections of head numbing sensations. They are songs that project definitive passion by taking playful rock n’ roll and stretching it toward operatic sensibilities. As such, they should not suffer the limitations of low volume. Rather, they must be given the chance to fill the halls of any dive bar or punk flat.

Fast Eddy know how to deliver stunning rock n’ roll tunes. Their previous material is a testament to is fact. While this record plays on the recognizable and it also shows remarkable range. To miss out on Take A Look would be poor choice to say the least. It’s well worth the listen and should be played on repeat until the needle wears out. After all, its music like this that remind us that rock n’ roll is still breathing, and it seems this is in part due to Fast Eddy. Now, pick this up.

For more Fast Eddy visit their website or at Spaghetty Town Records!

The Sloks — A Knife In Your Hand

The Sloks
A Knife In Your Hand
Voodoo Rhythm Records
Street: 09/21/2022

Wailing from the depths of the damned in Turin, Italy are The Sloks. They are Ivy Claudy, Tony Machete and Buddy Fuzz. In September 2021, they released their new album A Knife In Your Hand on an unsuspecting world. Within it’s grooves are the deranged trash of garage punk from hell. Listening to this album is akin to being lured by sirens from the crypts of depravity. The result being succumbing to wretched madness of a spiraling mental decline. Not surprisingly, this record has been released via the infamous Voodoo Rhythm Records.

A Knife In Your Hand starts out with the track “Dillinger.” The result of hearing this tune is like being dragged unto the depths of the unhinged. It’s a track that blasts out with heavy distortion and combines a stomping beat to match. In comparison, the second song “No Make Up” boasts primitive garage punk at it’s near finest.

A similar regard can be made for “Burn Baby Burn” and the title tack “A Knife In Your Hand.” The former is a rabid tune. While the latter sounds as though the possessed child from the Exorcist is serenading the listener with a certain malevolence. Both a perfect for a band that toes the line for uncompromising music found amongst a rock n’ roll massacre.

“Bad To The Bone” and “Last Grave” stand out in the album. They both celebrate an overwhelming noise backed by The Sloks garage punk method. This is due to slow build up around a chaotic distortion and harsh haunting vocals. The main distinction between the two is “Last Grave” prominent doom blues leanings.

 “Crank It Up” also shares some unique qualities in A Knife In Your Hands. While other tracks take on a gradual build up approach, “Crank It Up” raises dramatically the tempo. This track betrays a style both fast, raw while offering a desperate notion of eagerly circling in for a kill.  Like-minded songs are “Ruin It All” and “Exotic Store.”

Overall, A Knife In Your Hand lives up to menacing potential of noise driven garage punk. This is not a record for the faint hearted. Rather, within it’s grooves is music for demented and cursed. If that doesn’t deter you, when playing this record don’t hesitate have the volume dangerously high. Afterall, A Knife In Your Hand might as a well be a degenerate séance, and it demands to be heard. So, drop the needle at your risk.

The Beatersband — “Love I Can B W You”/ My Mother Plays Rock N’ Roll” 7”

The Beatersband

“Love I Can B W You”/ My Mother Plays Rock N’ Roll” 7”

Self-Released

Street: 11/03/2021

The Beatersband hail from Italy. They are Donatlla Guida ( lead vocals/guitar), Leonardo Serrini (bass) and Enrico Vanni (Drums). Since their formation in September 2018, they have been on a mission to celebrate the vocal music of ’50 and ’60s rock n’ roll music. To do this the seek to modernize it, while retaining it’s classic soulful essence. The result is their signature approach of infusing their songs with the infectious and sentimental sounds of punk infused rock n’ roll. With the release of their latest 7”, it is evident that they manage to do this quite well.

Musically, the Beatersband play with a style that nods toward groups like The Russians and Pale Lips. It is an approach that can be particularly heard in “Love I Can B W You.” This track blends punk sensibilities by adding rock n’ roll with a definitive power pop flair. The magic is with Guida’s vocals. In this song they emerge as a soulful power house from behind the wall of sound instrumentals.

“My Mother Plays Rock N’ Roll” is a slightly mellower and nostalgic tune. The theme covers remembering times growing up listening to the vocalist’s mother playing the likes of Elvis Presley, Mick Jagger or The Ronnetes. Overall, it’s a fun listen that grows on your with a gradual charm. Like the A-side of this 7″, it’s Guida’s soulful range that stands out and defines this track. “My Mother Plays Rock N’ Roll”is fun and simple, but short and sweet. It edges nearer toward a groove that captures a more ’60s girls in the garage angle, but with an indie twist.

In terms of modernization of vintage rock n’ roll styles, The Beatersband can play covers like “Hang On Sloopy” and absolutely show off some retro glamour.  That said, it’s with their original material that allows The Beatersband to shine on their own. Musically they blend rock n’ roll with power pop sensibilities that produce a distinct soulful flavor.  After releasing this 7″, The Beatersband certainly proved have the ability to play tight, energetic tunes. I’m looking forward to what comes next. Now, go give this ditty a spin.

For more about The Beatersband check out their Bandcamp!

Brad Marino — Looking For Trouble

Brad Marino

Looking For Trouble

07/29/2021

Spaghetty Town Records

Brad Marino certainly has a lot of swagger. Previously known for his work with The Connection, Marino’s solo material stands on it’s own. It’s perfectly displayed in his latest LP Looking For Trouble. This record was released by Spaghetty Town Records. Not surprising then that it’s an LP that shows off Marino’s affinity to blend the power pop style of The Nerves with an infusion of Rolling Stones-esque rock n’ roll. Looking For Trouble is the kind of listen that grows on you after each spin. It has it’s gems and they ought to be heard.

Looking For Trouble starts out with “ Even The Score.” A kind of feel good, southern rock n’ roll meets power pop tune. Think of The Booze twisting with Jordan Jones. It’s am approach that sets the musical tone for this record. Following in this line, albeit a bit faster, is “Taillights Fade” and title track “Looking For Trouble.”

For me, the track that comes across as remarkably clever is “Local Show.” If anyone has ever tried to woo their friends in vain to support their performances, this is your new anthem.  It’s a catchy tune that takes on a music scenes ever so relevant self-deprecating view of the hurdle’s groups try to make it on their local circuit. May it be folks wanting guest list status or discounted merch, it’s absurdity is mentioned in “Local Show.”

Another stand out track is “Tripwire.” This song breaks out as rock n’ roll tune that could be found in a spaghetti western. Cool and calm, this track superbly demonstrating Marino’s diversified musical talent.

On the B-side of Looking For Trouble is “False Alarm.” This track sounds like it could have come out of Paul Collins’ book of tricks. This theme is true for the rest of this records b-side. It’s particularly evident with like tracks like “Take Your Time” and “Fell In Love Again.” Both of which perfectly capture the power of Marino’s pop driven harmonies.  

“What Do You Know” stands out as a more pop driven punk number. This track is decidedly upbeat and easy to sing along to. In addition, this songs sound has a kind of a Beat-like flair. If this one doesn’t inspire some pogoing, then rinse and repeat by playing it again until you start to feel some life again.

Overall Looking For Trouble is a fun listen. The prevailing theme for this LP is it’s infectious charm. Marino knocks it out of the park with a distinct style punk rock n’ roll infused power pop. Top tracks for immediate consideration are “Local Show,” “Tripwire” and “What Do You Know.” For a good time check this one out.  This is a record meant to be played. So,  drop the needle on Looking For Trouble and boost your receiver.  

For more from Brad Marino check out his Bandcamp!

Bambies — Summer Soon

Bambies

Summer Soon

08/20/2021

Spaghetty Town Records

Bambies have released their new record Summer Soon. This album plays at the blistering speed of 45rpm. Featuring 12 solid tracks, this is a record that demands to be played loud. Which is perfect for this no holds bar punk rock n’ roll band.  This group is a based in Montreal, Canada and are made up of tri-national (Canada, France and Costa Rica) degenerate rebels-without a cause.  If you are fan of The Briefs, The Spits or Les Lullies, then Summer Soon will be up your alley.

The first track “Dirty Taint” is a rowdy sonic blast of power pop infused punk at it’s finest. It brilliantly sets the tone for this album.  Think of the Nervous Eaters playing with their definitive rock n’ roll swagger but at the break-neck speed of the Ramones. Next up title track “Summer Soon” follows suite in a similar vein. It is a perfect blend of snotty defiance and catchy sing along fun. 

For me the magic on Summer Soon is with ” Echo.” This song is infectious and wild. Much like “Dirty Taint” it carries a Ramones-like quality to it, but with snot filled quality worthy of The Spits.  “Echo” the kind of tune meant to bounce around like a speed-freaked idiot. So don’t mess around when playing this one, make sure to boost the receiver. You might make friends with your neighbors or roommates—or not. That’s the risk of playing volatile power pop infused with mutinous punk for the masses. Some get it, some don’t.

The B-side of this record also boasts it’s fair share of gems. Tracks like “Teen Engine” help root Summer Soon’s angsty punk theme. “Teen Engine” has plenty of infectious energy that is easy to get behind. Listening to this should inspire one to fly off the walls as if on a high voltage wire.

Other tracks like “Human Sake” and “RnR With You” capture Bambies superb ability to mix the angst of 70’s punk with garage rock rooted power pop. “Human Sake” is fun and rambunctious. It’s the kind of tune to bash about to. Listen for pure undulated fun. On the other hand, “RNR With You” lives up to it’s name. This track is fast and throws all caution to the wind. Like other track’s it’s got a signature power pop element that is infectious to the ears.

Overall, Summer Soon is an album worth dropping the needle on. Based off sound on this record alone catching Bambies live would be an unforgettable experience.  This trio demonstrate an excellence in blending fast paced punk with power pop.

If you the reader needed an album to kick them into an overdriven frenzy, then Summer Soon is for you.  So, be sure to pick this up. The result of playing this should be pogoing about like an absolute madman. Anything less will require adjusting to volume to the appropriate levels flashing lights of translucent red.  Now dig this.

For more about Bambies visit their Bandcamp!

The Sellwoods — Demented Planet EP

The Sellwoods

Demented Planet EP

Release: 06/25/2021

Chaputa Records

Since 2012 The Sellwoods have hoisted the black Cuban-heeled flag of garage rock revival.  Based in Portland, Oregon, this group pounds 1960’s garage punk  by blending it with hot rod, sizzled out fuzz driven rock n’ roll.  Fans of The Fuzztones, The Gruesomes or The Cynics with find the Demented Planet EP well among like-minds. It’s not a surprise then that The Sellwoods have found a home with Chaputa Records. Like previous releases, this EP comes via this label which is renowned for garage punk catalogue. So, readers beware. this EP’s lives up to it’s deranged potential. It’s not be handled lightly.

While only four tracks, the Demented Planet EP boasts a furry of rabid, primitive punches. This is evident with tracks “Volcano Girl” and “Down In The Alley.”  “Volcano Girl” has a kind of vacant, snotty vocal presence behind a prominent organ heavy presence. The latter is thanks to the guest contribution of The Reverberations own Dave Berkham. In contrast, “Down In The Alley” vaunts a wild sound that grabs a hold of it’s listener with the drop of the first note. It’s a kind of thriller tune that is sung from the perspective of a creeper-like figure waiting for a kill.

“Goldstar 500” follows up with some raucous hot rod garage. It’s simple and straight to the point. The title track “Demented Planet” celebrates The Sellwoods ability to knock out the savage beat. It’s haunted caveman nature begs a nod toward fellow rockers Screaming Lord Sutch or The Graveyard Five. For this reason, this track is perhaps the most exciting track on the EP and ought to be played uninhibited by the constraints of volume control.

The Sellwoods do not disappoint. I’ve enjoyed their material ever since catching them opening for The Jackets in February 2020. It would be amiss not to pay The Sellwoods their dues. Their composition is tight and fun.  Furthermore, these rock n’ rollers know how to strip down that rock n’ roll down to the bare essentials and then turn around to seamlessly bash it into one’s skull.  The Demented Planet EP is meant for lovers of the primordial noise of garage punk. So, get this record and give it a well deserved spin.

For more of The Sellwoods, check out their Bandcamp!

Duncan Reid and The Big Heads — Don’t Blame Yourself

Duncan Reid and The Big Heads

Don’t Blame Yourself

LBH Records

Street: 05/15/2020

There’s something impressively enamoring about Duncan Reid and The Big Heads. They boast a definitive, yet familiar vein. Their new record Don’t Blame Yourself blends power pop with punk sensibilities by twisting it into a definitive pub rock sound. That being said, this isn’t adolescent rock n’ roll. It’s music that is well refined and remains consistently engaging throughout.  Fans of Reid’s previous ventures will find a home with this record. Especially if they like The Boys or even  Eddie and The Hot Rods.

When picking this album up, it’s important to approach it with an open mind. It’s not suffering from the plague of mediocrity. Duncan Reid And The Big Heads are not just another Ramones-influenced rock group. They have years of experience that explore a remarkable depth of style.

The theme of Don’t Blame Yourself seems to be one of coming into a sense of maturity if not a sense of impending mortality. This is demonstrated by many of this records tracks emphasizing a certain reflection toward life lived and lost. Some tracks like “Oh What A Lovely Day” celebrate power pop melody’s coupled with calming, yet ruminative lyrical properties.  Other songs like this are “Came The Day,” and “Dave.”

Many of their tracks have an upbeat  nature to them and are arguably infectious to the ears. This is mostly true with tracks like “Your Future Ex Wife,” “To Live Or Live Not” and of course the ever so charmingly titled “Motherfucker.”

Singing along to this record isn’t required, but it’ll be hard not to do after some pint-sized liquid courage. This is particularly true with “Motherfucker” and “To Live Or Live Not.” The former has the fun and catchy chorus derived from the title of the track. Besides, who doesn’t want to sing “motherfucker” at the top of their lungs?

The latter, “To Live Or Live Not” is a track starts out strong and grips you. This is arguably thanks to Reid’s catchy word smithing ,and the tracks prominent chugging riffs.   Not to mention it’s power pop driven with certain harmonies that stick with you like glue. It’s only three minutes long, but the smoothness of it’s delivery makes “To Live Or Live Not” feel short and sweet.

The title song “Don’t Blame Yourself” is easily my favorite track on this record. It’s a true and blue punk rock n’ roll tune.  This is thanks to the bluesy rock driven riffs that give “Don’t Blame Yourself” a definitive edge.  It’s very reminiscent of something TV Smith later work encompasses. Another track like this is “Little Miss Understood.”

In Don’t Blame Yourself, listeners will find a range to work with. One moment it’s a tune to groove to, the other a song that invokes strong memories and emotions. This release seems oddly appropriate for this year. This is because 2020 is a year representing a challenge and shock to the normalcies of day-to-day life.

While surely recorded pre-covid 19, Don’t Blame Yourself is almost perfect for the slowness of today’s reality. After all, an album exploring a mid-life crisis is apt for anyone coping with the turbulence of 2020. Nevertheless, be sure to check out Don’t Blame Yourself.  It’s good and ought to be listened to.

For more about Duncan Reid and The Big Heads, check out their website!