Casting a seductive web of sixties and garage punk, Kristy and the Kraks has a sound which sidles up to the imagination with lips pouted and provocatively swaying hips before adding a sonic glaze to the affair which permeates psyche and passions with equal tenacity. Hailing from Vienna, the band has just released their debut self-titled EP, a release consisting of four songs said to be inspired by Le Tigre and Julie Ruin. It is a raw and enchanting blaze of punk enterprise which croons and teases as its scores the senses in a presence which for us is best described as The Cramps and The Creeping Ivies meets The 5 6 7 8’s and The Crystals.
Kristy and the Kranks is the creation and union of Kate Kristal (Rabe, Dot Dash) and Ana Threat (The Happy Kids, Bretzel Krake Hoffer), the two coming together for the project in the spring of last year. Providing a temptation of two sets of vocals, a single guitar, and a basic stand-up drum set, the pair alternating instruments for certain songs, Kristy And The Kraks mesmerise with their sound. Like the best strains of garage punk the band makes a startling first impression, one which challenges and intrigues predominantly but it is not long before their lo-fi wiles and simple melodic toxicity become an irresistible and captivating temptress.
A resonance of drums opens up the EP as I Don’t Love You No More steps into view, the initial beckoning soon joined by sultry calls of guitar, both aspects gentle in their persuasion and gait at first. As the vocals come forward a more flaming voice emerges in the guitar strokes, their acidic tempting deliciously raw edged as they align with the smouldering harmonies which skirt the similarly heated vocal lead. The chorus brings a flush of urgency behind its melodic enticement which then switches to and fro with the previous more even tempered but fiery narrative. The song and sound is quite compelling, like a humid union of The Shangri-Las and The Fall and thoroughly absorbing.
The following Twentyone is forty two seconds of irresistible addictiveness. It is simply a hypnotic stride of beats inflamed by scuzz grilled guitar with intermittent vocal shouts striking across its bow. There is very little more to it but boy is it effective and inflammatory for the passions, riling and lighting them up for the next up No No No No No. The third song, which has also been the source of the band’s debut video, opens on a sensational throaty twang of guitar, its resourceful baiting of the imagination complemented by harmonic waves of vocals and a courting percussive coaxing. The song flirts with its moves and sounds, its swerves and tempting as raw and seductive as you could wish for. There is something primal about the song and the overall sound of the band, an instinctive lure which you cannot tear yourself or emotions away from, with this track arguably the most naturally bewitching of the four.
The just as masterfully magnetic Suicide completes the contagious incitement, the song veining its shadows with sirenesque harmonies entwined in rich guitar colour as well as a rhythmic punctuation. It all combines to provide a gripping drama with a healthy whisper of The Slits to its invention.
The EP is a magnificent debut, a release which increases its persuasion and beauty over each dive into its vibrant uncluttered depths. A release for garage punk, post punk, and lo-fi melodic punk fans, Kristy And The Kraks has announced themselves with one lingering fascination of a debut. Expect to hear and enjoy a lot more of this charismatic band.
The EP is available as a limited edition 7″ as well as a digital download via Totally Wired Records now!
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