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Album Review

by The Bronx


Review Date
11th February 2013
Reviewed by

These ‘purveyors of audio and visual dissidence’ from California are a really monstrous live band and have previously made three excellent rock-punk-hardcore albums; each one stretching out the idiom of punk-fucking-rock a little further than the last in terms of production and songwriting. This fourth album is another progression on the older material, and is invigorated by half a decade spent traversing the world as an entertaining, fully-fledged mariachi band – releasing two albums as Mariachi El Bronx, which are equally worth your time on Earth. Actual ‘Bronx’ live shows were few and far between during this period: happening on a party boat in New York City, or perhaps in a large mid-west US arena playing warm-up for the Foo Fighters. You gotta pay the bills, and have some fun, right?

Right, so pop the new record on the stereo, grab a cold drink and a bit of summer sunshine, crank it up and the first couple of tracks ‘The Unholy Hand’, ‘Style Over Everything’ and ‘Youth Wasted’ set you up perfectly for unruly behaviour, shenanigans and partying of the highest order. With any luck, your neighbours will be quite accustomed to this heavy scene and won’t immediately call noise control. In which case, feel free to jack the volume a little bit more for ‘Too Many Devils’ and grab another cold beer. Kick back, relax: you’ve earned a little blowout, eh? Besides, you gotta love a band that can recall guitar tones and the energy of Black Flag and weld it to production that gives all the players equal footing when it comes to pounding your skull. By now you’ll be thinking about when these chaps are gonna tour NZ again, so here’s hoping they include us on the scheduled April tour through Australia.

Mellowier track ‘Torches’ lowers the tempo slightly, then back into ‘Under The Rabbit’ for more beer, more partying, perhaps you’ll consider hitting the whiskey & actually answering those random marketing phone calls on the landline (“What? Sorry, what, hang on oh nevermind”). Or considering just getting rid of the landline phone altogether, and why is it so hot in here?

Okay, so the phone has gone through the living room window, there’s a lovely summer breeze coming though the hole in the glass and the fridge still has an ample supply of cold drinks. ‘Ribcage’ kicks in with vim and vigour! Time for partying! Yeah! ‘Valley Heat’ gives face-melting energy to your drinking and partying skills, so you take off your shoes, socks and shirt, feeling pretty damn invincible. You let your neighbour know that you’re invincible by smearing tomato sauce over your chest and banging your hand on the kitchen table repeatedly. Things might be getting a little out of hand. Lucky then for second to last track 'Life Less Ordinary' which leaves you to reflect on your life’s work for a moment before throwing you back into the fray with appropriately titled ‘Last Revelation’ – half a pen to Black Sabbath, and half a pen to the aforementioned arena-domes full of rock dudes.


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