With the same instinctive infectiousness of early Undertones and the hook ability of Buzzcocks, DEMO 1 the debut EP from UK punks The Cottonettes is one of the most refreshing and invigorating genre releases this year. Grasped by a potent breath of nostalgia too, the four track stomp feeds all the needs and wants of any punk hunger whilst teasing with a pop contagion which is virulent and unashamedly anthemic. Sound wise the band transports you back to the likes of Television Personalities, The Shapes, and Swell Maps with a dose of the pop punkness of The Buzzards and The Lurkers to its charm, whilst equally carving out a presence set firmly in the audacious invention of the now. The result is a release and sound which is raw and honest, mischievous, and a wholly irresistible mayhem.
Formed in February 2012 by Guildford guitarist Ben Madle who soon recruited bassist Josh Young from Fleet into his master plan with Basingstoke based drummer Marty Dixon being brought in by the four string slapper, The Cottonettes has built a potent reputation and following around their immediate locale through their energetic live devilry and a series of cheek slapping singles. It is a presence which is stretching further afield and with the EP, and luck, will soon be igniting nationwide awareness and hunger for their unpolished gem of a sound.
Won’t Ya opens up the release and is instantly barracking the ears with thumping rhythms and antagonistic riffs. It is a magnetic introduction soon driven by the unpolished vocals and a prime punk probing of the senses; simplicity and a genuine intent to unleash pure fun fuelling the track whilst translating it all to a riveting and addictive persuasion which soon has feet and voice joining its brawl. With an oi whisper loudly showing its sinews, an essence of bands like Serious Drinking adding to the mix, the track is a delicious incitement of old school glories and memories alongside a modern day bruising.
It is followed by the exceptional For The Boys, a sure fire anthem which will have venues, terraces, and passions reaping its seeds. Senses bashing beats rile up the air first before the guitar starts slashing any remaining peace with discord clad riffs and ridiculously addictive hooks. Like a riot instigated by Peter and the Test Tube Babies and Suburban Studs, the track is an infestation of epidemic punk antagonism and raucous seduction which recruits the fullest enjoyment and wholehearted participation.
Entering on a confident swagger, Happy For You takes up the reins left by the previous song to stomp through the ear straight to the passions, big swinging rhythms and jangle coated guitars skirting vocal chants and a boisterous energy. It is a full-on punk persuasion which leads thoughts and emotions into nefarious anarchic ways before the closing Oh No! Yoko finishes the release off in a blaze of melodically rubbed pop punk. Catchy grooves and hooks make welcome bait amongst the caustic riffs and commanding rhythms, the mix especially with the more melody soaked voice of the song reminiscent of The Freshies.
DEMO 1 is an excellent slice of essential punk rock and The Cottonettes a band who carve out a thrilling stance through distilling old school British punk with a more devious modern version which teases with varied flavours. This is a band and release which deserves the fullest attention and recognition within the genre and you suspect they will soon be getting it.
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