Pumpehuset, Copenhagen, DEN - 21/4
Written by: PP on 29/03/2017 22:32:34
Leave it to Black Numbers to keep The FEST-style beard punk alive and kicking. Last year's introduction to Toronto's Deforesters on their four-track self-titled EP was a fresh reminder that you don't need to reinvent the wheel in order to produce an enjoyable Midwestern punk EP, and their debut full-length "Leonard" picks up where that record left off. Just like before, we find ourselves somewhere in between first album Red City Radio-esque gravelly roaring and Off With Their Heads style no-frills, Midwestern punk rock. The edges are sharp and roughened on purpose to retain the charming honesty and down-to-earth sound, but that doesn't reduce the appeal of the songs in the slightest.
What we're dealing with here is a fast-paced punk rocker that's best described with words like gruff and rowdy, and with references to beer punk, simplicity, and straight up, no-nonsense songwriting. Basically, textbook Midwestern punk that's best experienced in sweaty basements in intense circle pits characterized by a small scene community vibe. The buzzing guitars give the songs a high-energy feel, which combines with infectious sing-along melodies on tracks like "I'll Take The Crab Juice", "Exercise In Futility" or the lengthy "The Topiary Animals Are Telling Me To Do Terrible Things", to name but a few great pieces on the album. And just to give you a flavor of how much inspiration is drawn from Red City Radio, check out "Zesty Mordant". It utilizes precisely the same kind of dynamic as RCR did on their first album: a quieter section explodes into loud (yet melodic) roars with a big chorus sing along that's executed perfectly according to the genre rulebook.
Though Deforesters don't bring much new to the table compared to existing no-frills / Midwestern punk bands, their gravelly, roared vocals and unassuming, straightforward melodies are catchy and enjoyable all the same. If anything, "Leonard" is one of the better releases the genre has seen in the last couple of years, and a must purchase for RCR/Off With Their Heads fans.
Download: I'll Take The Crab Juice, Exercise In Futility, The Topiary Animals Are Telling Me To Do Terrible Things, A Song For The Reptoids Of Denver International Airport
For the fans of: Off With Their Heads, Red City Radio, The Slow Death
Release date 25.02.2017