Non-stop rocker Alien Nosejob, aka Jake Robertson, returns to earth with his second full-length record of 2020, finally bringing the high-octane hardcore punk side of the band to an LP.
Hot on the heels of January’s "Suddenly Everything Is Twice As Loud" LP, Nosejob carries on their winning streak and wordy album titles with "Once Again The Present Becomes The Past", which instead follows in the footsteps of the November’s "HC45" 7; merging early 80’s hardcore and late 70’s NWOBHM.
"Once Again The Present Becomes The Past" started life as a concept record about Australia’s first and largest air raid, the 1942 Bombing Of Darwin. However, while grappling with this heavy subject-matter, something from Norm Macdonald’s book, of all places, stuck with Jake: "The Present Became Past Again". History is forever repeating itself. It continues to happen. It will happen again.
As the record took shape, it was fleshed out with the help of his new reel-to-reel recorder, turning crust and hardcore influences into the dark and cold array of songs documented within.
Find out why Alien Nosejob is one of the rare signifiers of both quantity AND quality.
Our take: Alien Nosejob drops his second full-length of 2020 (Suddenly Everything Is Twice as Loud came out earlier this year on Drunken Sailor Records), and I think it’s clear the increased frequency of releases is due to a creative surge rather than a lapse in quality control. Once Again continues the thought Alien Nosejob introduced on the HC45 7” on Iron Lung, presenting a bunch of ripping hardcore songs without pandering to purists. For me, the standout is “Airborne Toxic Event,” the record’s first hardcore track (after a one-minute “Piano Prelude” that starts the record). That track centers around a riff I could imagine forming the backbone of a great Impalers track, though the thinner recording and Roberts’ higher-pitched vocals mark it unmistakably as an Alien Nosejob track. From there, “Air Raid On N.T.” and “Pointed Shears” have a punkier, Career Suicide type of vibe (the latter’s Agent Orange-y riff being an album highlight) and the anthemic “Once More 1984” sounds like the Rikk Agnew solo LP put through a modern weird punk filter. Whether Alien Nosejob is playing ripping hardcore, spacey synth instrumentals, or melodic punk, everything works, and Once Again the Present Becomes the Past feels even more invigorating because it has so much variety and ambition. I wonder if this is too hardcore for the Anti-Fade Records set and too outside the box for people who only listen to hardcore, but for someone like me who likes both sounds, this is a killer record.