Rancid

Trouble Maker

Written by: PP on 23/08/2017 20:59:30

Thank god for bands like Rancid. Unwavered by modern trends and an all-too-often unnecessary need to evolve musically, they still sound like they used to back in the day. In other words, Rancid is Rancid is Rancid, which summarizes their ninth album "Trouble Maker" nicely. It's a quintessential Rancid album: Rancid playing Rancid songs to Rancid fans. Don't expect this record to win over any new fans or convince the skeptics, but as one internet commenter suggested, "How can a brand new song sound like an old favorite", referring to the "naa naa naa naa naa na naaa naa naa naa naa naa naaaaaa"-driven "Telegraph Avenue". So what we have here are seventeen songs of brand new Rancid music spanning over 36 minutes designed to sound familiar and make old fans feel right at home.

So on the off-chance that you're not yet familiar with Rancid music: it's all about the contrast between high-energy street punk with oi! influences and spike-laden attitude versus the sloppier, ska/reggae material that carries more of a relaxed, chill out vibe to it. Rock'n'roll has always been the base element when you listen to the riffs, just adapted to a punk rock setting with plenty of gang shouts and the like. The dual lead vocals between Tim Armstrong's sloppy and whiskey-drenched style and Lars Fredriksen's more traditional in your face punk style has always been a hit because it allows them to roam freely on the genre map while keeping the core sound together in the process. As a result, you have songs that range from loungy rockers to fast-paced, high-energy onslaughts of raw punk energy and old school vibes and everything in between.

"Farewell Lola Blue", for instance, will resonate with all longtime fans of Rancid through its upbeat street punk ethos, whereas "Where I'm Going" will appeal to the ska/reggae fans with its easy-going sing-along style. Both are as classic Rancid as they come, yet they are considerably different from one another. A song like "Ghost Of A Chance" is equally good with its up-then-down vocal melodies and rowdy vibe...and that's basically the story of "Trouble Maker". It's full of tracks that sound like the golden 90s never went away, some better than others, but with a solid foundation which ensures that as long as you like Rancid, you'll find them altogether enjoyable. It might not be spectacular or a genre classic, but their brand of rollicking punk that freely roams between looser chillout tracks and tighter street punk anthems is exactly the kind of injection of reassuring quality that the scene needs on a regular basis to remind us not to stray too far away from the basics.

Download: Farewell Lola Blue, Ghost Of A Chance, Telegraph Avenue, I Kept A Promise, Where I'm Going, Molly Make Up Your Mind
For the fans of: NOFX, Plow United, Radio Dead Ones, Ex Friends, The Interrupters
Listen: Facebook

Release date 09.06.2017
Hellcat / Epitaph

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