Pumpehuset, Copenhagen, DEN - 15/4
Written by: PP on 08/03/2017 21:22:18
"Because if we've never been so rich, the question is why are we feeling so poor?", asks Niels Højgaard Sørensen aka. Stöj Snak on his debut album "ScreamerSongwriter" with his characteristically sore, strained voice. It's a valid question in times of economic growth for the rich and turmoil for the poor and underlines the sociopolitical thematics that are explored throughout the album. After multiple critically acclaimed EPs and charming live performances across the country, the intellectual lyricism delivered through halfway screamed vocals and folksy melodies supported by harmonica and acoustic guitar has finally resulted in a full-length's worth of songs.
Just like in the past, "ScreamerSongwriter" finds itself somewhere between folk, punk, and singer-songwriter genres without really fitting like a glove into any one of them. Too aggressive and edgy to be folk or singer-songwriter, but too quiet and laid back to qualify for folk punk, it's a niché style that the album title so aptly describes. From the rowdy, fast-paced "Fuck" that deals with LGBT rights and how they should really come naturally to our civilization, to the more mellow and melancholic social critique on "White Male Middle-Class Blues", it's not so much the unusual stylistic choices nor overall soundscape that impresses rather than the sharp lyrics through and through. Consider this opening passage from the latter, for instance:
"I spend most of my daytime in a dark room, moving digits on a screen / Trading time for food on the table, looking for a loophole out of here / But here our kids and houses just serve to remind us of all the coming bills we have to pay / So we stay in jobs that we don’t care for to afford more shit that we don’t need"
Food for thought. A phrase which, incidentally, would have been very fitting for the album as a whole. Which is why fans of groups like Frank Turner, Andrew Jackson Jihad, and older Against Me material will find more than just sonic similarities on the album. Yes, it's slightly less punk and more singer-songwriter oriented than any of the EPs, but that just means you pay even more attention to the lyrics than before. A unique, fresh twist on folk/punk, that's for sure.
Download: Spoiler Alert, White Male Middle-Class Blues, Hu-Men, Fuck
For the fans of: Frank Turner, Andrew Jackson Jihad, (old) Against Me!
Release date 09.06.2016
5FeetUnder Records / TNS Records