Take a Ride on the ‘Ferris Wheel!”

I love it when bands that I have never heard of reach out to me.  The latest band to do just that is Ferris Wheel from Belarus.  After forming in 2015, they have already released a full-length album entitled ‘Choice.’  Let’s check it out…


  1. -Заўсёды наперад! (Always forward!)-Ferris Wheel hits the ground running with a full surge of aggressive punk with horns sound. Grade: A-


  1. Маладыя гады (Young years)- Featuring gang vocals, ‘Young Years’ has a dirty street punk feel. The horn lines here are lightning-speed and heart-pounding.  Get ready to take a nap after this musical workout.  Great tune!  Grade: A


  1. Выбар (Choice)-I really wish I spoke the native tongue of Ferris Wheel, to understand the vocal intro to this song. None the less, this is more of the same great stuff heard on the first two tracks.  Don’t miss the killer trumpet solo near the halfway point.  Grade: A-


  1. Поезд в лето (The Train in the Summer)-As far as I can tell this song features a different vocalist, which is a great way to shake things up. Although there is excellent horn and guitar work in this tune, the two don’t always mesh, in my opinion.  Otherwise, this is a great song.  Grade: B+


  1. Тараканы (Cockroaches)- Compared to the previous songs, this one has a relatively stripped down feeling. The horns are more of an accent than a main-player.  This job is done to perfection.  Grade: A-


  1. Радикальная любовь (Radical love)- While this song is done in the same vain as the previous ones, this one grows a little tired with me. Maybe it is the absence of horns.  I do like the usage of double kick-pedal, however. Grade: B


  1. Цирк (Circus)- This is one of the most unique ska songs I have ever heard. Starting out relatively slow with the stereotypical “circus melody” done with the trumpet.  The mood quickly darkens with a full assault to the senses.  I really enjoyed how during the harder, more aggressive parts, the trumpet kept a smooth quality, like your typical jazz number.  Wow!  Grade: A


  1. Будем Жить! (Will Live!)- “Will Live!” is a slight change in direction for the band. Although it is ska punk at its core, this one is more upbeat.  It reminds me of Reel Big Fish and Suburban Legends.  A great closing track.  Grade: A-


I will start with a disclaimer.  If you do not listening to music in another language, than this album will not be your thing.  According to one of the band members, the lyrics on this album are sung in either Russian or Belarusian.  If you are a fan of ska punk or ska core than I urge you to give it a listen.  Ferris Wheel brings a fervent energy that is present in each and every track.  From the punk style guitars to the blaring horns, this band fits right at home with their American counterparts.  For a more aggressive style, I even enjoyed the quality of the leader singer’s voice.  The only thing that may be slightly off-putting (although it may grow on you, as it did with me) is the fluidity of the lyrics.  When  songs are done in English, the lyrics either rhyme or flow together in a different way.   The lyrics here did not do this as well, but I attribute this to me not speaking either Russian or Belarusian.  I suspect that if you only spoke one of these languages, that songs done in English would sound a bit different as well.  Musically speaking there is a lot of variety within only 8 tracks as illustrated by the phenomenal trumpet work and the sheer uniqueness of “Circus.”   Ferris Wheel does not sound like anyone I’ve heard, but fans of the ska core genre will dig their style.  Easy comparisons include The Mighty Mighty Bosstones and Chilled Monkey Brains, although there is still quite a bit of differences between these three.  Probably a better comparison is Eskalation from Germany.  Please do yourself a favor, and open up your mind.  I hope you dig this young talent as much as I did.


Overall Grade: A-


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