Topnovil/Bum City Saints (EP)

Topnovil/Bum City Saints

Pirates Press Records / Contra Records, 2017

http://www.facebook.com/Topnovil

REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 02/26/2020

This is a split 7” that brings Australia's Topnovil and the Bay Area's Bum City Saints together. Each band offers three tunes to their respective sides, and there's certainly no shortage of energy, enthusiasm, and authentic punk rock presence to be found. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

Side A starts with Topnovil's thumping, blistering hardcore punk ideas where shouted vocals match the furious atmosphere as gang vocals infiltrate the anthemic delivery of “Nothing At All.” “Battered And Bruised” follows with melodic guitar work as the less abrasive setting recruits sing-alongs, and “True To The End” finishes their side with gruff, street punk influenced nods that will appeal to fans of Black Flag and Rancid.

Staples of the Australian punk scene, Topnovil has been plugging away for over 20 years now. That experience and skill is certainly evident on their more tuneful portion of the listen that's highly indebted to the early days of punk.

Side B lets Bum City Saints shine, and although their tunes are shorter, they are certainly no less impactful. “Hail The Flag” gets the pit warmed up with plenty of backing vocals amid the angular and buzzing atmosphere, while “One More Song” builds into a speedy display of old school punk ideas, where barked vocals run alongside more melodic singing. “Pray They'll Forget” exits the EP with one of the best tunes, that's both abrasive and memorable.

Though Bum City Saints are a much younger band than Topnovil, they've been quite prolific and are making a significant presence with their powerful and raw approach that's both intelligent and topical. Although their tunes often don't surpass two minutes, the trio goes right for the throat and leave an indelible mark.

An essential piece of wax for all fans of today's street punk scene, this one comes with great artwork, informative packaging, and a download code, too.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated


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