Barn Burner - Bangers II: Scum of the Earth (Metal Blade/Riot)

More songs about beer and dirty underwear - brilliant!
Release Date: 
6 Jun 2011 - 11:30pm

The last time Barn Burner brought an album out, I proclaimed it an excellent record before confidently predicting that, good though it was, this hapless band of Canadian wasters would be swept away in the tide of stoner hysteria caused by the release of High on Fire’s Snakes for the Divine a week later. Of these two feats of analysis the first was right – but I couldn’t have been more wrong with the second. Bangers – the first version thereof- was such a strong record it beat off all comers with its simple mixture of primal riffage and sheer feelgood gonzo intensity, and ended 2010 on many end of year ‘best of charts’, earning the band the right for another tilt at the crown in 2011.

To say they’ve grasped that nettle with alacrity with Bangers II... would be something of an understatement; everything you loved about the first album is here again, albeit done, faster, heavier and ultimately better this time around. Progress isn’t the watchword here – simplistic, bowel-rattling heavy rock n’roll doesn’t give an artist a whole lot of room to move- but there is a definite move forward of some sort on ...Scum of the Earth.

Overall Barn Burner is in a slightly bleaker place musically than it was eighteen months ago. The band has added a certain doomy nastiness to their armoury in that time, which gives the likes of the excellent Gate Creeper a sinister edge that really suits the song. That’s not to say the goofy slacker pride of the likes of Beer Today, Bong Tomorrow is gone – Keg Stand and Deliver and Skid Marks the Spot hold that end of the band’s bargain up admirably, but there is a creeping sense of maturity about this release that would indicate that Barn Burner have got a bit more to offer us in the years to come – which is definitely good news. A definite candidate for those lists again this year.