Muscle up

Some Minneapolis punks who don't seem to have gotten the memo that we're living in 2017, not 1987. They're much more SoCal (or, actually, London) than anything that was emerging from the Twin Cities back in the day, but that time frame is still pretty accurate. OpIvy without the ska is probably the best approximation.

The Slow Death
(Rad Girlfriend Records)

Moderately fast, chunky and vaguely tuneful, these songs blast past with style. The production is probably a notch above the demo-level of old school punk, but the Slow Death isn't very interested in cleaning things up excessively. A quick wipe of the counter, if you will.

Absolutely not attempting to reinvent a goddamn thing, the Slow Death riffs through its often clunky anthems with the grace of a water buffalo. The title of the album is instructive. These songs may have hooks and a spot of melody, but they're best appreciated at 11. And with a few cups of coffee.

This hits a sweet spot for me. It's hardly relevant to today, and I can't say there is a single song that is unforgettable. But the adrenaline rush is spectacular, and whenever I played this I could not stop smiling. Time to strap on my combat boots and do a little stomping.

Jon Worley

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