Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Album Review: Here We Come Again by The Dumbheads

I don't think that I've ever heard punk rock from Russia before until late last year when a chap named Dmitriy got in touch with me and asked me to review Here We Come Again by The Dumbheads. I’m always looking to check out new bands from all over the world and, being excited after reading the bands influences include The Ramones, The Queers and Screeching Weasel, I hurriedly checked them out.

The opening song on the EP is called The Good, The Bad, The Dumbhead and is a completely instrumental introduction track. As you can guess from the title of the track and the EP's cover art there is a slight Western theme to the punk rock sound. The first proper song on the EP shares the EP's title Here We Come Again. Happily The Dumbheads are a band that wear their influences on their sleeves with some fast, three-chord pop punk with catchy lyrics and hooks galore. You'll be singing the chorus of "Here We Come Again" after just one listen and it will be stuck in your head for days. The next song, Save Your Breath, continues with the three chord pop punk but also has a lot more of a rock and roll aggression to it. This might be a bit of an obscure reference but the vocals really remind me of early 2000's Californian street punk band Pistol Grip (a really underrated band). The vocals are deeper than you might expect from a band with the influences that The Dumbheads have but I like it, it shows the band is not just copying the bands that are their heroes. The fourth song on the EP is titled Lost In Your Game and is a bit softer but definitely keeps the rock attitude. People often describe the Queers as being a cross between The Beach Boys and The Ramones, Lost In Your Game makes me think of The Queers but if The Queers played with a lot more rock and roll. Surf rock is not a genre of music you would expect from a Russian band but they make it work really well. Up next is a cover of The Replacements Rattlesnake. I really should listen to more of The Replacements as they appear to have influenced a lot of bands. I've never heard Rattlesnake but I can't imagine that The Replacements played it as fast as The Dumbheads do here. This fast and rowdy version of the song is actually my highlight of the EP. Here We Come Again is completed with another instrumental track named Secret Agent In Baghdad. It's interesting for a band to have two instrumental tracks on what is a six-song EP. It's a nice idea though as it helps bookend it and makes it feel like there are proper starting and finishing positions.

Stream and download Here We Come Again here: https://dumbheads.bandcamp.com/album/here-we-come-again

Like The Dumbheads here: https://www.facebook.com/thedumbheads