Record of the Week: Cold Meat: Hot and Flustered LP

Cold Meat: Hot and Flustered 12” (Static Shock Records) Perth, Australia’s Cold Meat has released a slew of notable cassettes and EPs over the past five years, but Hot and Flustered is their debut full-length. Hitting the perfect middle ground between Good Throb’s anger-drenched skronk and Crass’s more freewheeling tantrums, this one was well worth the wait. As with Good Throb, songs that seem like pure gestalt on the first listen transform, upon subsequent listens, into earworms. Just check that simple, Billy-Childish-via-the-Shitty-Limits riff that drives “Women’s Work,” the anthemic chorus to “Industry Sleaze” (“admit… you’re… shit!”), or the nervous hardcore of “Squirm.” Cold Meat also deftly takes advantage of how their singer can sound exactly like Eve Libertine on longer tracks like “Cinematic Fashion.” The main part of that song is a down-tempo dirge with the ranting lyrics front and center, while the chorus finds the rhythm wrenched into something weirder, bringing in the artiness that was always such a big part of Crass’s identity. Hot and Flustered is everything I want punk to be: angry, challenging, memorable, and above all great fun to listen to.

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