|dragSTER - 'Dead Punk' (STP Records)|
|Written by Dom Daley|
|Friday, 05 September 2014 03:20|
After what seems like an eternity between records this brand new dragSTER album has been hotly anticipated at Uber Rock, I can tell you. Between the 'Meat Robots' and this they've managed to replace AC Speed post the finished album and from the initial plays this is some monster swan song for Mr. Speed because after the briefest of intros 'Gatecrasher Hostage' is right on the money from the production to the delivery to the playing to the vocals to the mix - this is a blast and glunk as fuck!
The title track, 'Dead Punk', is a feisty number and has some very sweet bass noodling and a chorus you can fist pump along to. Fi is in fine form slinging out the lyrics with much venom and the false ending is excellent. As things rip along dragSTER have really found a groove.
Anyone who's seen the band live will have heard first hand how brutal 'Drink You Pretty' is and the song absolutely motors along. Imagine being sobered up by someone thumping you in the nose with a knuckleduster as the lyrics pour disdain and spite over the subject matter in a very unforgiving manner. Another blinder from the Midlands-based punks and possibly the finest tune they've written to date.
I wasn't kidding when I alluded to the fact that dragSTER had found their groove because one thing they've done is gone away and penned a stonkin' collection of songs, they really have. Oh, and did I mention that frontwoman Fi is playing a blinder and songs like 'Cattle Prod' are being owned by her, as is the pounding 'Evil Craze' which is one hefty slab of adrenalin punk rock.
So good is this album that picking a stand-out tune at this stage is impossible: from the frantic and heavy drum blitz that is 'Terminal Loser' via the short but oh so sweet 'Just Wanna Fuck'; and a song like 'Liar Like That', had it been penned stateside by a pissed off Brody Dalle or a Courtney Love (possibly), then people would be raving about how fucking good it was. Well, those two would be lucky to have come up with this and Fi again hits it square on its punk rock jaw and floors it much like 'Death By A Thousand Cuts', lyrically and musically right on the money.
After the thrill and rush of the previous ten songs we're in the home straight now and 'Indonesian Buzzcut' shows no let up hidden down the tracklist with some more very nice bass runs from Tom that are subtle but on more than one track really adds to the songs.
On the penultimate song, 'Fire Fight With Gasoline', whilst maintaining the band ferocity the verses show a melodic side before dipping back in to a frantic relentless pace as Fi goes pop on us with some strong melodic vocals, but don't be fooled, it still rocks like fuck! All good things must end and 'Dead Punk' is reduced to rubble via the foul pissed off 'Skull Ring'.
Let's not fuck around here, this could well be a contender come the end of year because I can't stop playing it. dragSTER have stepped up to the plate and not just knocked it out of the ball park but have totally smashed it! The playing, production and songwriting is noticeably better than before and I loved that debut album but 'Dead Punk' is fuckin' blistering and so much better. Hipsters and wannabe punk rockers check it out because dragSTER have delivered one hell of an album that deserves the accolade of being one of the best albums to hit the streets in 2014 and I'm happy to endorse its awesomeness. Just buy it!