Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Symbol Six - Dirtyland

Symbol Six was originally an early 80's LA punk band, though I never saw them at the time. They are now reformed with none other than guitar-meister Tony Fate (Grey Spikes/Bellrays/Black Widows/lots more) at the helm. I saw them a few months back and have been meaning to get to this CD ever since, but...

Although they consider themselves a hard core band, I believe that they have a lot more dynamics, melody and interest than most bands in that genre and I would more likely call them punk'n'roll.

That said, they certainly do not lack in power and energy, as is evidenced in the opening title track. Lots of chant-along vocals, no unlike bands like the Fluid in the later 80's. Cool guitar work and chord changes in "Generation Damnation" and "Viva" is a punk rock take on garage numbers like "Leaving Here". "Madness" and "Creepin'" would not sound out of place at all on any Hellacopters record, and anyone who knows me knows that is a high compliment! In fact, now that I think about it, the Hellacopters have recorded at least one of Tony Fate's songs, so there ya go...

Some Misfits-styled "whoa-ohs" appropriately open "Woes", with its stop-on-a-dime dynamics courtesy of drummer Phil George and bassist Evan Shanks, "Spit It Out" is a big-chorus Dead Boys-type of punk rock with some fiery guitar, "Outta My Way" is frantic, but singer Eric Leach keeps it melodic, while the guitars continue to wail throughout. A bit more 70's-styled riff-punk in "Psychosix", cool starts'n'stops in "Nitro", more big vocal chants in "Never Gonna Make It" and finishing up with a live bonus track of "Fired Up".

Well done, modern take on late 70's/early 80's punk rock. I know I name-checked a number of other bands, but that is simply my writing laziness, as I can't come up with the words to describe their sound on my own. Check 'em out for some tight, high-energy punk'n'roll!