Monday, February 07, 2011

Mongrel-The New Breed Of Old School

Immolation Records 2010

In botany, the term mongrel sometimes means the offspring of a variety of species which is in contrast to the hybrid (per wikipedia). Mongrel (the band) could be seen as the offspring of a variety of different bands that is in contrast to the hybrid punk. Imagine taking the genes of the Misfits,Offspring,Rage Against The Machine,Black Flag, Dayglo Abortions and Motorhead then mashing it all up. Mongrel would be the result. Formed in 2003 in eastern Massachusetts, Mongrel started off locally before tearing up the national stage. Having played with everyone from Fear to Gwar to Dizzy Reed (ex G-N-R) Mongrel have been keeping the spirit of punk rock alive and breathing. Featuring guitarist Adam Strange, bassist Rev and new members Jessica Sierra (vocals) and Dave Kazukiewicz (drums) The New Breed Of Old School is one beast of an EP. Featuring six re-recorded tracks taken from the group's "Fear, Lies, & Propaganda" cd The New Breed Of Old School serves an introduction for fans of the group to the new line up. Starting off with "West Memphis Hell" Jessica Sierra comes screaming out of the gates like a demonically possessed female Zack de la Rocha. A fast and furious punk rocker "West Memphis Hell" focuses on the controversial case of the West Memphis 3. "I Refuse" follows and reminded me of old school punk like Sham 69, Stiff Little Fingers and The Avengers. Probably the best track on the EP "I Refuse" is an anti-conformity anthem along the lines of "Fading American Dream" by the Street Dogs ( "I Refuse" is much better though). The next cut "Shut Up,Get Dead" honestly didn't do much for me. It's decent enough punk with metal riffs.It's not bad or anything it's just an alright track. "Bound To Crash" though I really got into. Imagine the Distillers meeting the Cranberries in a back alley, getting all messed up and then writing an emotional rocker Sloppy Seconds style. Coolness is all I can say. "Houdini Act" has a Rage Against The Machine feel going for it especially with that razor guitar. Vocalist Jessica really punishes you though here. I couldn't tell if she scared the crap out of me or if I thought she was the coolest lady I've ever heard. Finishing things off is the excellent "The World Loves A Tragedy". It brought to mind early Offspring (back before they became MTV stars). A venom filled rant "The World Loves A Tragedy" could easily find airplay on alternative radio stations (well, you would have to have the beeper button handy but no one ever said punk was polite). I highly doubt that is what Mongrel is aiming for though. This whole EP has that great feel and smell of old school punk. Back when bands like Jerry's Kids were pushing the boundaries of punk into metal I could have seen Mongrel fitting right in. If this EP is an indication of what the band can do I look forward to their full length due out sometime this year. Mongrel reminded me of the words from "Carnival In Rio (Punk Was)" by Die Toten Hosen (another great punk metal band kids so check them out):
"Punk was rotten, punk was vicious,
always being unambitious.
Punk was a piss-up, punk was a punch-up,
picking your nose and chucking your lunch up.
Punk was obnoxious, punk was obscene,
having a pop at our dear Queen.
Punk was a twisted tasteless trip,
punk was a pin through her majesty's lip"

"The New Breed Of Old School" is punk. It might be dressed in metal's clothing but it is punk nonetheless. A great EP that's worthy of it's title. Find out more at:


Anonymous Adam Savage said...

thank you very much for the review!

11:21 PM  
Blogger sumner.39rock said...

mongrel's live show " SOLIDLY F>ING DESTROYED " on Jan 29 in NH

12:06 AM  

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