As soon as learning that the armament within punk ‘n’ rollers Ligaments involved a double bass, intrigue and excitement, as we are suckers for the throaty seduction of said instrument, was rife. It was an anticipation swiftly satisfied by the London based trio’s excellent Ligaments (Eat Pizza EP). With throaty bass slaps in tandem with roaring vocals and voracious riffs, the four-song encounter proved itself to be an imposing and impressive introduction to the band.
Formed in 2012 after Napoli hailing Nicola Itro (double bass, vocals) and Londoner Jake Maxwell (guitar, vocals) met at the 12 Bar Club in Soho, Ligaments create a sound which is part ’77 punk, part old school rock ‘n’ roll, part rockabilly rapacity, and all 21st Century ferocity. Last year saw former Pettybone member Zel Kaute join the band on drums, bringing a passion for pizza with her which humorously themes the visual side of the new release. Already Ligaments have supported the likes of Pure Graft, The Meteors, The Vibrators, and GBH, and made Europe a regular playground for their thumping live presence, but it is with their debut EP that it is easy to expect a new spotlight shining on the creative bellow and potential of this exciting band.
Recorded with Wayne Adams (USA Nails, Death Pedals), the EP takes little time grabbing attention as opener Precinct 13 brews up an immediate dirty hard rock coaxing. Initially held in a more distant embrace, it is soon bursting loud and anthemically upon the senses, and straight away Itro’s moody basslines are claiming an eager appetite. Equally the blaze of riff causticity and swinging punchy rhythms from Kaute are stealing their share of the focus. Minor Threat has been offered as a reference to the band’s sound but similarly here essences of Living End and AFI make a potent flavouring to the riotous proposition.
The great start is right away eclipsed by 4th, and again bass slaps and tenacious beats provide inescapable bait for the guitar of Maxwell to blaze over. Into its stride, the track marries a melodic ferociousness with a whiff of The Bronx to it, to a bruising yet captivating Peacocks like punk rumble. It is raw, unfussy, and magnetically anthemic but just an appetiser itself for the closing pair of treats starting with the Tiger Army like swing of Turn To Acid. Sultry in air and contagious in rhythmic enterprise, Itro again laying down virulent temptation, the track is stripped down rock ‘n’ roll providing an unpolished but craftily lean musical narrative almost revelling in its addictive nature.
Final song In The Black Lodge emerges as the favourite, again the dark charms on Tiger Army and AFI seeping into the psychobilly kissed landscape of the song. An anthem for feet and voice to instantly consume, the track stomps through ears, jabbing the senses with every swing of its epidemic energy. With thick basslines and insatiable melodies adding further primal tempting, it is a roaring blaze of the song.
Whether a fan of punk or rockabilly, in fact for anyone with a taste for any shade of rock ‘n’ roll, there is great pleasure to be found in Ligaments first release, and a ripe potential fuelling their impressive debut which suggests the band is going places.
The Ligaments (Eat Pizza EP) is available through all digital platforms from Monday 16th February and on ltd edition (250 pressed) CD @ http://theligaments.bandcamp.com/
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