Part IV- ‘What Do You Know About Ska Punk? Vol. 1




31. Askultura-“Older Sister”-Time for a good ol’ fashioned ska hoedown. Askultura brings to this compilation one of the most unique songs on this compilation.  If ska, bluegrass, a pirate and school-yard double-dutch had a baby, this is what is would sound like.    Grade: B-

32. Night Gaunts-“Trippin’ In the Basement”- sounding slightly like “Hiding in my Headphones from Reel Big Fish, “Trippin” blurs the lines of what most would consider ska.  Ska- at its core, yes, but elements of straight up rock and hip-hop are paired with wacky vocals.  I’m not sure I could listen to an entire album of songs like this, but I enjoyed this tune for what it was.  Grade: B+

33. Autnomads-“Headline”- The male vocals dropped my opinion of this song down a notch, but his female counterpart reminded me of many of the vocalists from my favorite gal groups of the 80’s (Bananarama, The Bangles, The Go-Go’s etc.) Instrumentally this is a straight up ska ditty.  This band shows promise and I can’t wait to check out some of their other stuff.  Grade: B+

34. The Mini Nukes-“Pound Shop Prostitute”- There aren’t a lot of 3-piece ska-infused bands that can pull it off. The Mini Nukes are no exception.  I was not a fan of the vocals and the constant changing of rhythms gave me musical whiplash.  Grade: D

35. Dance Contraption-“Open Road”- The ska band rolodex in my head is failing because these guys remind me of anther band, but I cannot put my finger on it. Feeling more like straight up rock then punk, all in all I liked this song.  Other than the need to polish things up a bit, this song is a winner.  Grade: B+

36. Johnny Kawalski and the Sexy Weirdos-“Tequila Song”- As previously mentioned, I’m not usually a fan of drinking songs, but this for some reason works. Maybe it is the light-hearted tone as opposed to the belligerent drunk nature of the other songs.  The Sexy Weirdos’ sound features elements of ska, but there is much more going on than that.  Their Facebook page describes their music as body-snatching carnival punk.  I would say this is an accurate description.  Grade: B

37. Public Serpents-“Get Right”- There was nothing wrong with the instrumentation in this fine example of ska-punk, but I could not get past the vocals.  Vocally, this sounded like Slapstick, but with more screaming.  Sorry, not my thing.  Grade: D-

38. Sea Serpent Tsunami-“Dance Rude Boy”-I really enjoyed the longer intro to this one, which built up my anticipation of what was to come. The vocals were not abrasive and the lone saxophone really created an edginess.  I was not a fan however of the gang vocals and awkward rhythm changes.  Overall a solid tune.  Grade: B

39. Bada Bings-“To Hell With Every T.V.”-When this song first started, it was your typical ska-infused punk number.  As the song played on I became more disinterested and bored.  Sorry guys.  Grade: C-

40. The UpFux-“Killjoy”- Upbeat, happy ska with whistling! Musically, this is certainly on par, but again, I’m not a huge fan of the vocals.  Grade: B-


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