"Very Exciting!" CD
Genres: punk, pop, metal-punk
PO Box 7112
Burbank CA 91910
May 3 - 9 2004
This is how it's done. The Hard-Ons, a punk three-piece
from Sydney, Australia, are a very solid band. Their key to
success is a wonderful pop sensibility, meaning each tune is a
fantastic nugget of punk energy crossed with infectious hooks and a
popular accessibility. These guys have been playing together
since 1982, so it's no surprise they've gotten so good at it.
Very Exciting! features a lot of poppish material, as well
as some more aggressive, metal-influenced hard punk. They are
clearly most effective with the former. "Scared of it
All," for example, is a thrilling, energy-charged rocker with a
fantastic chorus that could really make it a hit. It has a dark,
gripping sound to it that will please both punk and rock listeners -
and it's easily the album's best moment. "Olympic
Diver," meanwhile, isn't as dark, but is more fiery and
rapid. The inclusion of a tremendously infectious chorus will
make it a favourite with anyone lucky enough to hear it.
"Killing Me" and "Breakfast Caramel" are also in
the same vein.
The less enjoyable moments of Very Exciting! are those when
the band tries to be too metal. Tracks like "(Everytime
I Hear) Techno (I Pray For Death)" and the gargly death
metal-cum-punk rocker "Cat's Got Your Tongue" just don't fit
in with the majority of this record.
Overall, though, The Hard-Ons are on their game for most of Very
Exciting!, and we're all quite fortunate for that. Music
this great deserved to be heard. Check it out.
[Vitals: 15 tracks, distributed by the
label, released 2003]