I assume anyone reading this will by now have heard the news that legendary Manchester punk band Revenge Of The Psychotronic Man are breaking up in December. This is really sad news and a massive loss for the UK DIY punk scene. The three piece are one of the most incredible live bands I've ever seen, connecting with their audience in a way that no other band can. They also write some damn good speed punk tunes that always get me smiling even if I sometimes I have absolutely no idea what's going on. As somewhat of a parting gift, Revenge have released a final LP which features tracks from their entire discography as well as some rarities and unreleased songs. At twenty six songs long, it's basically packed with all of the Revenge Of The Psychotronic Man goodness you could possibly need.
The album's title is That Was Just A Noise which kind of works brilliantly for what people's first perception of Revenge can sometimes be. They play what on the surface is this extremely fast and aggressive punk rock music, that for the uninitiated can be taken as just noise. Revenge maintain their sense of humour until the very end by taking that perception and embracing it. Of course their music is more than just noise. They write these incredibly catchy tunes that fill the listener with a massive amount of energy. Seriously listen to songs like Booze Time, Mine's A Pint and I Wanna Be A Spaceman and try to stay still. It's really difficult not to, at the very least, have a bit of a head bang let alone resist starting a full on circle pit in my living room.
It's perhaps not surprising that That Was Just A Noise is packed with songs about having a good time and Revenge's DIY punk ethos. Songs like Get Pissed, Talk Shit, Dance Like An Idiot, Mine's A Pint and Booze Time are about having the best time with your mates, while Another Way, To Be Frank and Mainstream Music Is Shit cover what life is like in a DIY punk rock band. Then we have the excellent Drinking In The Van which covers both. Revenge have this great knack for taking a serious song and making it a bit silly and then taking a sillier song and making it seem quite serious.
Matt and Andy take turns on lead vocal duties throughout the album. This keeps the songs sounding fresh and prevents any feelings of staleness sinking it. A band like Revenge needs two vocalists, the speed that they sing in must be exhausting! Musically it's very rare that the band ever take the time to slow down but on the occasion that they do, like on the instrumental I Know A Cracking Owl Sanctuary or The Queen Is Dead, Long Live The King Singers (yes, this is one of the slower tracks on the album) they prove that they are more than just a band that play stupidly fast.
That Was Just A Noise is such a fantastic record for Revenge Of The Psychotronic Man to finish up with. Whenever I think of Revenge I automatically think about what a crazy live band they are but they have also written some pretty special songs. I feel like this is sometimes overlooked when people talk about the band. It's just bloody wonderful that so many of the band's greatest songs have been collected together in one final package so we can remember one of the best and most important DIY punk bands that the UK has ever seen.
Stream and download That Was Just A Noise here: https://revengeofthepsychotronicman.bandcamp.com/
Like Revenge Of The Psychotronic Man here: https://www.facebook.com/RevengeofthePsychotronicMan/
This review was written by Colin Clark.