- by Steve Ricciutti Release Date:2017-03-24 Label: Haus of Pins
Drums and guitars hammer out a psychedelic distress signal before Guest Star of the Year Iggy Pop saunters up to the mic and begins reading poetry with his sonorous Midwestern accent. This yields to an ominous chorus of, “So many actions, so many voices” over and over. It’s a hella auspicious beginning to PINS latest, the EP Bad Thing. It’s also a hint of what’s to come, as in; this should be interesting. It should be, but isn’t. Such a promising start doesn’t allow them to coast the rest of the time, but rather sets the bar pretty high, a height they fail to reach after track one fades out.
Before I continue, a quick side bar: thank Jeebus the self-proclaimed “old git” Pop took up the offer from PINS to guest on the track, “Aggrophobe.” It’s encouraging to see rock’s elder statesmen like Pop work with young, largely unknown acts; much like Jeff Beck did last year with his record/tour showcasing the two members of Bones. Clearly, not all old rock stars become the disconnected douchebags the punkers of old warned us against. #irony
As I was saying - this is the sixth release from PINS, a six-year-old Manchester band, and it’s a compelling mix of their influences, e.g. Jesus and Mary Chain, Hole, and My Bloody Valentine. I might add some shades of early Siouxsie as well. Also present is Joy Division as the band does a cover of “Dead Souls.” It’s not a unique take, but it’s certainly complimentary.
“All Hail” has a broad sixties feel including girl-group sing-a-long harmonies and surf-garage guitar riffs. It’s the strongest track beyond the opener and is, in a word: bitchin’. Closer “In Nightmares” has a creepy John Carpenter soundtrack feel that is juxtaposed with some rather generic love-gone-wrong lyrics. The title track is a crunchy if thin anthem; a strained attempt at self-definition. If you insist on pushing your agenda using superficial clichés, then you can’t complain when people define you thusly. “Everyone says we’re no good. We don’t do what we should” isn’t going to start a whole lot of revolutions unless they’re the ones of eyes going backward into sockets.
This EP is merely okay – a cool song or two, one very interesting one, and some toss away things, as well. The good outweigh the not so good; hence the solid average grade, but when you release an EP, there’s little room for average.