Evil Spirits

The Damned

Spinefarm, 2018

http://www.officialdamned.com

REVIEW BY: Pete Crigler

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED: 04/12/2018

One of the most venerated and longstanding punk bands ever is back with their first record in 13 years, and boy, is it a doozy! Opening track “Standing On The Edge Of Tomorrow” is one of the best songs of the year and one of the coolest of the Damned’s long and illustrious career. Whew! It needed to be said and I have said it.nbtc__dv_250

“The Devil In Disguise” is okay but feels like an average album track. “We’re So Nice” has a great performance from Dave Vanian and is one of the more lighthearted tracks here, but it works well because of the production and the musicianship. Captain Sensible still is an underrated guitarist and he showcases his ability well on this release. “Procrastination” is the only weak track here, something that doesn’t work and just feels like a toss off B-side.

The title track is a nifty little rocker that manages to showcase how truly great this band is and always has been. “Shadow Evocation” feels like a cut0 from their early ‘80s goth phase that just feels so right in this day and age. This is just an all-around fantastic little record. Even the trumpet flourishes on “Sonar Deceit” bring the song to life, not to mention the bass playing by Paul Gray. Closing track “I Don’t Care” kicks off as a piano ballad with Monty and Vanian before slamming into full band mode; it comes off very well and is a great showcase for Vanian’s always impressive vocal range.

“The Daily Liar” seems like a ‘60s pop song with lots of organ and more trumpet, but it also shows how different The Damned has been from a lot of other punk bands. Not content to stay in one lane, the band has managed to weave their tapestry over so many genres and they do it extremely well, too. This record just goes to prove how they’ve managed to keep their title of the coolest punk band still going.

Rating: B+

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