Ever since having our senses assaulted and bullied by an outstanding debut album, the wait for a successor from UK punks Brassick has been a long wait but now the moment has arrived though we can only warn you to be beware because the release is going to seriously leave you a wasted, delirious mess. As striking and impressive as what came before was, it was a mere appetiser to the gloriously belligerent riot on the world that is 2.0.
The Birmingham hailing quartet of vocalist Nicola Hardy, guitarist Peter Macbeth, bassist George Chick, and drummer Tom Fenn may have taken their time for whatever reasons to follow up their self-titled first album but the time between has only seen the band hone their writing, sound and imaginations for the rousing and striking beast that is 2.0. As ever their sound is a hardcore and punk bred antagonism embracing some of the most contagious melody entangled hooks and sly twists you can wish for. If that debut full-length hinted at other bands at times, its successor is as individual to Brassick as you could desire as it riles and roars at the world and its injustices and corruptions.
Also featuring guest appearances from GBH’s Jock Blyth and Chris Scott from Ska punks Sick Pins, 2.0 launches at ears with Vultures Of The Poor though the track first lures and entangles them in a seriously tempting sonic thread before stamping its authority on attention with heavy booted beats and a subsequent crescendo building up to its voracious roar. In no time the rousing tones of Hardy are abrasing and igniting the air too, the song by now storming the senses with its irritable hardcore attitude and instincts.
A warning to all and of what is to come; the compelling opener is soon outshone by next up They Say. The first single from the album, it dangles an old school punk hook before the listener; one easy to chew on as too is the infectious hook loaded stroll which brews though that, as the album itself, is never anything less than unpredictable and furiously animated. As rhythms flew and vocals scowled, addiction was a quick reaction and just as firm before next up It Could Have Been Any Of Us. From its opening rub of caustic riffs and the menacing rumble of Fenn’s beats, the track devoured the passions. The heavy grumble of Chick’s bass and Hardy’s vocal and lyrical antagonism equally hit the spot just as the metal nurtured exploits of MacBeth and the floating harmonies which did little to temper the ire but added to the pleasure all the same.
Two of our majorly favourite moments come next, They Saved Us with its sinister character and opening lead to anthemic uproar the kind of protagonist lust was made for while A Half Life is a glorious fusion of punk and power pop drenched in bile and magnetism. Male vocals make for a riveting union with Hardy’s raucously irascible holler; it matched in invention and captivation by the swinging riffs, lithe hooks and rapacious rhythms which shape the outstanding encounter.
At fourteen tracks the album dares attention to wander but there is never a moment for that possibility to take hold as the likes of the sonically and emotionally fractious Nobody, the slice of dirty and crabby punk ‘n’ roll that is Anslinger, and Peanut Gallery with its melody bound calm and ultimately tempestuous challenge perpetually proved gripping, manipulative incitements so easy to feast upon and get involved in.
There was no change with the aggression fuelled 39 Souls. To be honest all tracks are built on a certain depth of truculence even with the regular injections of mischief and tongue in cheek opportunities across the release, but this turns in into a rabid trespass which Stagnate echoes in its delicious half minute of concussive virulence and Pull Me Up hones into the breath of its old school punk nurtured catchiness; both tracks again especially inflaming an already firmly set appetite for the record.
The final trio of tracks ensure 2.0 is as powerful and thrilling as anything up to this point; No Longer a song entwined with melodic wiring as again male vocals stand eye to eye with the forcibly supportive Hardy which led the passions into greedy lust while Until It’s Gone casts a skilfully infectious and thoughtfully provocative raw temptation upon ears and imagination.
Closed out by Always Exist and its verbal goading surrounded by just as pugnacious sounds though equally there is plenty of irresistible melodic teasing to bask in, 2.0 from start to finish is quite simply magnificent; right up there with some of the best punk offerings heard in recent times. Not much more to say…
2.0 is out now on limited White 12” vinyl, CD and digital formats through TNS Records and Mass Prod; available @ https://www.tnsrecords.co.uk/shop/distro/cds/brassick-2-0/ and https://tnsrecords.bandcamp.com/album/20
Pete RingMaster 24/04/2020
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