I am sure we all get excited and very often from new bands and introductions to their creative persuasions, but truly, really excited? Maybe much less so but that deep rooted tingle has certainly been inspired by the Siren EP from UK synth punks The Dead Betas. Our first encounter with the North Devon quintet but their third EP, Siren is a rioting, confrontational slab of creative and energetic agitation. Consisting of five in your face provocations of sonic anarchy as well as a trio of remixes, the release is middle finger raised punk rock cast in electro and alternative rock devilment, and quite compelling.
Emerging in 2010, The Dead Betas began whipping up attention with first EP Blast-Arcadecore at the end of that first year. The Dead End Habit EP three years later sparked a fresh and more intensive wave of attention, though some of us missed that invitation also. Having taken in stage sharing with the likes of Mindless Self Indulgence, UK Subs, Lethal Bizzle, Boomtown Rats, InMe and many more over the years and fresh from playing Goff Fest recently, the band explodes into view again with Siren, a cracker of an incitement uncaged just before the band go on a UK tour supporting The Birthday Massacre.
With its songs looking at “life, or the lack of, in small towns across the world”, Siren erupts into life with its title track, and instantly has body and emotions breeding a lusty appetite for its punk rock ruggedness. Riffs and rhythms gang up on the senses in an intimidating but anthemic way, keys hanging around in the background and almost smiling at the trespass under way before throwing off their own cloak and dancing vivaciously across the stomping landscape. There is a great old school punk essence to the track but equally a modern ferocity and imagination, like The Vibrators and Autopsy Boys meets a punk version of Young Knives.
It is an exhilarating start soon surpassed by the mischievous sounds and character of A Night On The Town. Synths and the tangy twangs of guitar strings open up the proposal, rhythms in close quarter with their own jabbing tempting. The aggressive vocal delivery only adds to the potency and fierceness of the electro rocker, as does an open inspiration of MSI, and as the keys continue to swirl venomously around the psyche, the punkish nature of the track reveals an aggravated intent to incite the deepest pleasure within the volatile adventure of the excellent song.
15. comes next and immediately has a flurry of catchy hooks and electro tempting teasing and firing up body and thoughts. Feet are tapping with rigour almost straight away whilst hips flirt with the enterprise of the synths as vocals roar and accuse simultaneously. Again there is an essence of Young Knives to the encounter, more openly through the vocals, whilst thoughts of Hadouken and Swound! add to the colourful and irritable energy of another exhaustingly thrilling offering. Adrenaline, as through all songs, surges within sound and delivery whilst contagiousness, well that’s a given.
From a broody bassline, Lotion steps forward for the rawest punk offering on the release, grooves and hooks as belligerent as the caustic vocals. Electronic melodies simmer away within the battleground of the song though for once they remain there adding alluring spices. Lyrically the song pulls no punches either and certainly this track has brought many lamenting on the juvenile immaturity of the writing. Here you can understand their thoughts though for us it feels, rightly or wrongly, like it is a character pouring out the coarse narrative, and if the latter it has done punk bands and indeed MSI no harm over the years anyway.
The release’s original tracks end with the brilliant tempest of Ego Song, the finest slab of electro punk you will probably hear this year. Like Rabbit Junk meets The Adicts with a splash of once more Swound!, the song twists and rages with a spiky attitude, sinister synth bred melodies, and addiction forging virulence. Punk does not get any more dynamic and bracing.
With remixes from Martron, Bear La Soul, and Alpha Project of the title track completing the release, all enjoyable interpretations though always you hanker for the original, Siren leaves energies breathless and emotions thrilled. If like us the EP is your wake-up call to The Dead Betas then a treat is guaranteed and for those in the know, the band just proves that no matter their claim, punk is not dead, just evolving again.
The Siren EP is available now @ http://www.thedeadbetas.bigcartel.com/
Tour dates for The Birthday Massacre with The Dead Betas and The Red Paintings.
April 21st – Classic Grand, Glasgow
April 22nd – Academy, Manchester
April 24th – Institute, Birmingham
April 25th – The Garage, London
April 26th – The Fleece, Bristol
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