One of the best bands to emerge (re-emerge?) from York’s little punk scene over the past year; Carnival Rejects bring some fast and catchy, sweet, sweet melodic hardcore to the table, laced with the odd bit of metal riffage and the common decency of introducing riffs with an “ugh!”
Having had the pleasure of catching them live numerous times and being consistently possessed to bounce along joyfully I was looking rather forward to this début EP. Four tracks. Ten minutes. Available from Bandcamp. For free.
Opening with a big fuck-off power chord over a bubbling bass and an impatient snare (I think. A drum anyway.) chomping at the bit, it all kicks in with one of the aforementioned “ugh!” and they are off into ‘Manic Wolves’. Snarling vocals, gritty, but with the well-written lyrics audible. Fleet-fingered leads permeate the EP adding to the excitement and never going too indulgent by nature of the tight and deft approach to song-writing. The drums are a stand-out on this EP, holding it all together with aplomb; swift rolls and build-ups as the band generates a true sense of the frantic.
‘Be A Magician’ is my favourite from seeing them live. The chorus usually sticking in my head for a good few days afterwards. Dead Generation too, has an anthemic quality. The songs are strengthened by quality production; everything is nice and clear without sounding too sterile, another good job by Dan Whiting.
All in all Carnival Rejects are a band that play honest-to-satan punk rock, with some skill and panache in the execution. They are a great addition to the local scene and this great début very much deserves to get them heard further afield. The only real downside is it’s a bit too short. Album next then Carnies?