Third album in and Australian skate punksters, The Decline, continue to offer contagion fuelled stomps that simply rouse up the spirit. Resister is packed to the rafters with imagination crafted and wholly magnetic propositions, tracks which only want to offer a good time whilst uncaging a lyrical substance easy to get involved with. Pop/skate punk boundaries are certainly not worried too forcibly by the thirteen track adventure but any resistance to its unstoppable virulence is swiftly dead in its invigorating waters.
Formed in 2006, the Perth hailing quartet made its first strong attention grabbing mark with debut album I’m Not Gonna Lie to You in 2010, an encounter straight away pushing the band towards international awareness. Its acclaimed successor of the following year, Are You Going To Eat That, helped spark the opportunity for The Decline to undertake a headlining tour of Europe as well as a Japanese tour with Israeli pop-punkers Useless ID and So-Cal 90’s super band Implants. Across the years the band has continued to share stages with the likes of Descendents, Unwritten Law, Frenzal Rhomb, Propagandhi, Bodyjar, Bouncing Souls, Anti-Flag, Lagwagon, No Use For A Name, No Fun At All, Guttermouth, and The Flatliners, they amongst a great many others. 2014 saw the release of the crowd-funded Can I Borrow A Feeling EP as well as another hectic tour schedule whilst after a line-up shuffle earlier this year, The Decline set about recording Resister, its immediate unveiling coming just before the band hits the festivals Punk Rock Holiday in Slovenia, Munich’s Free and Easy Fest, and Rebellion, the latter one part of a UK tour running through August. With further global shows in the offing too, Resister provides the most potent incentive to check the band out and make this a summer of insatiable romping.
The release opens with New Again, a short, punchy encounter which quickly sets the creative scene for the album. Jangling melodies flirt with muscular rhythms whilst the potent vocals of guitarists Pat Decline and Ben Elliott unite and entwine across the tenacious start to the album. There are no surprises but plenty of fiercely flavoursome sounds setting up ears and appetite for the following Giving Up is a Gateway Drug, the first single from Resister. With the thumping beats of Harry steering the song into view, his drums a blur of activity, the song twists and turns with emotion and energy. Every second is a tempestuous and easy persuasion for ears, vocals again slightly outshining the sounds, but all aspects crafted with inventive and unpredictable elements.
As strong as its start is, Resister kicks up another gear or two from I Don’t Believe onwards. Featuring guest vocals from Cameron Baines of Bodyjar, the third track boldly enters on rolling anthemic rhythms, they in turn laced with sonic spicing from the guitars before it all colludes in one seriously infectious incitement. A whiff of older schooled punk embraces poppier exploits resulting in a rigorous and pungent anthem swinging punches at the music scene and stirring up new hunger for the release. It is an appetite fed just as healthily and fully by Almost Never Met You, a song littered with tangy riffs, sparkling hooks, and the ever impressing vocal combination. The throaty bass twang of Ray Ray as good as steals the show but is matched all the way by the spices just mentioned and a Green Day meets Bodyjar essence coating the excellent encounter.
Both The Blurst of Times and You Call This A Holiday? keep the album’s new levels roaring in ears and thoughts, the first with fiery atmosphere and attitude to body and voice, and the second through its seamless and magnetic passage from a riveting acoustic/vocal lure into another throttle to the floor ball of creative and physical energy. Each, but especially the former, has an air of The Living End to the full-blooded tempting whilst Camberwell Street straight after, explodes with a richer hardcore but melody drenched escapade. It does not quite live up to its predecessors, but again with skilled endeavour and ideation spicing every aspect the song, hits the spot nicely before making way for the similarly successful Broken Bones.
The thickly pleasing Wrecking Ball fires up the passions, even with its opening barbershop skit. Subsequently into an unbridled bellow of aggression and explosive energy, the track is an easy persuasion of rippling rhythms, inescapable hooks, and more potent vocal combinations. But as good as it is though, it gets over shadowed by the outstanding You’re Not The Waitress, another pop infused punk tempest which is pure contagion.
The thirty second Little Voices is more of the same, revealing a similarity to the previous track and others around it without losing its individual potency during a short tenure of ears. It stirs the emotions nicely which Underworld Tour takes on a thrilling ride straight after with its NOFX/Motion City Soundtrack/ Set Your Goals like fusion of sound and imagination. Again rousing is the best word to describe its heavy satisfaction breeding character as it leaves the listener on a high ready for the closing catchy onslaught of Start Again. The song sums up The Decline sound perfectly, melodically hot, energetically sizzling, and creatively lively in a gripping finish to a fine album.
As suggested earlier, major surprises come in rare batches across Resister yet few moments truly feed expectations and every song is a galvanic exploit hard to turn away from. That certainly works for us!
Resister is available now through Pee Records (Australia) @ https://peerecords.bandcamp.com/album/resister, Bird Attack (USA) @ https://birdattackrecords.bandcamp.com/album/resister-4, and Cargo Records (Europe/UK).
The Decline UK tour dates:
Sat 8th – The Maze, Nottingham
Sun 9th – Rebellion Festival, Blackpool
Mon 10th – New Cross Inn, London w/ MDC (Millions of Dead Cops)
Wed 12th – Brudenell, Leeds w/ MDC (Millions of Dead Cops)
Thu 13th – The Hope And Ruin, Brighton
Fri 14th – Owl Sanctuary, Norwich w/War On Women
Sat 15th – Nice N Sleazy, Glasgow
Sun 16th – Exchange, Bristol w/ Teenage Bottlerocket
Mon 17th – The Fighting Cocks, Kingston