Saturday, September 08, 2012



I've got a soft spot in my heart for Boston's Mongrel. Merging punk and metal might not be a new concept obviously. No need to dredge up the history of the two, and thus where/when they first meet up and shared a beer together, as there is a list a mile long of bands who had crafted the perfect blend of the two genres. Boston's Mongrel therefore might not be treading new territory, but man if they don't at least take punk metal and give it a nice kick in the underside! Mongrel (Adam Savage: guitars & backing vocals, Dave Kazukiewicz: drums, Jessica Sierra: vocals and Rev: bass & backing vocals) seem to have used the time between albums to really polish their craft as "Reclamation" sounds like a band with a mission. Album opener "Bored to Death" is downright groovy (yes, I said groovy) while "Pseudocide" sounds like the Ramone's "We're A Happy Family" on speed. Walking dead fan's should appreciate the killer "Zombies of War" while a track like "Crucifiction" talks to all of us who still hold Lemmy and act in such high regard. "Reclamation" is an album that finds Mongrel pulling in it's affection for punk and metal (which is to be expected), but how about groove and even straight up rock? Yeah, again not exactly new as there are waves of bands that did the same thing, but when it's pulled off this well? Even my 12 year old son (who prefers The Beatles over Metallica) was bopping his head along to the sound's of Mongrel. That is universal appeal and that is a winning formula. I'd be remiss if I didn't mention how good tracks like "Revisionist", "Stillborn Savior" and "No Gods No Masters" were. Vocalist Jessica Sierra has settled into a style that, not only works, but sounds so nature that it's as if she just stood there and the band grew up around her perfectly evolving to suite her sound. Without sounding too far fetched this is an album that might just find it's way into my best of list come years end. Sure, for those who know me well enough punk metal is something I can always get behind so I'm a homer when it comes to this kind of thing. That does not mean I can't spot the fair from the fantastic. With "Reclamation" the band has recorded an album that, if life was fair (which we all know it certainly isn't) and this had been released on a major label, Mongrel would be the new....well, let's say they would be a new (and much better) version of The Offspring for today's kids to gravitate to. Only difference is that The Offspring are nowhere near this metal or good and The Offspring don't have Jessica Sierra to lead the way!


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