Underworld, London, UK - 21/5
Written by: PP on 07/09/2012 15:48:57
If drunken nights consisting of mindless fun while lightly moshing along to no-frills pop punk is your idea of good times had, then you should direct your attention to The Priceduifkes, a Belgian punk rock band that I first discovered when they did a gig-exchange with our local Midwestern sounding punkers The Respirators. "Can't Lose" is basically the prototypical album in the genre, where those elements are combined flawlessly into a mad catchy, light-hearted, and joyous celebration of the best aspects of the style. That's also why I've opted to review the record even though it was released over a year ago, because if I'm having this much fun listening to it, then so should you guys.
Almost all of my favorite punk/pop punk albums begin with a sample that sets the tone for the rest of the record. Lifetime's "Jersey's Best Dancers", for instance, begins with the classic suggestion "In order for you to play with this record, you must tune your guitar to ours. We will start with the first string", whereas Dillinger Four's "CIVIL WAR" starts by giving "one additional word of advice, you have to listen closely, or you can easily get behind when listening to this record", and off we go with fast-paced punk rock for the ages. "Can't Lose" begins with a simple statement "gentlemen, synchronize watches", before an extended school clock ring signals the end of the pause and time go back into business. It's an awesome start for the album because it acts as a warning of sorts, almost like a "watch out, the speed's about to get picked up big time right now" kind of a statement. From here onwards, The Priceduifkes basically school their contemporaries in The Hextalls, Dear Landlord, Banner Pilot, The Dopamines, The 20 Belows and others in how no-frills punk rock should be done.
For instance, highlight track "Bye Bye Love" has an infectious melody line that makes it impossible to avoid singing along. "Start Drinking" is a harmless drinking anthem about, yes, drinking beer, and "I'd Rather Be In The Jizzhut Tonight" is about the bartender not serving them any more beers. Despite the admittedly silly lyricism, the band do otherwise everything right: the songs are ridiculously catchy, the choruses are great, the tempo is nice and fast, and the rhythm guitar rings at the lower spectrum of the range to make space for the more melodic sound of their lead guitar. Just don't expect any scales, instrumental mastery or anything like that: this is pure power chord based punk rock with no bullshit attached. Just fun times and catchy songs, delivered tightly with the conviction of a band that believes hand-at-heart that music need not be complicated or ambitious to sound awesome. And that's precisely what "Can't Lose" is: awesome.
Download: Bye Bye Love, Start Drinking, Stuck
For the fans of: The 20Belows, The Dopamines, Dear Landlord, The Hextalls, Banner Pilot
Release date 12.03.2011