Portland’s FRENZY are back with 12 tracks of bouncy, noizey, hardcore punk! Pink vinyl!
Our take: It’s been several years since we’ve heard from Portland’s Frenzy, but they’re back with their debut LP. As before, their aesthetic is silly and over the top (my favorite part is the track listing on the back cover, where they cover every letter in meticulously drawn studs, chains, and zippers), but the music is original and hardly a joke. Yes, they use pogo beats, but more often than not they’re played at blazing tempos that can sound more like Scum-era Napalm Death than Asta Kask or the Swankys. Further, their vocalist doesn’t grunt, scream, or squeal, but has a hardcore-style bark that reminds me of Pat Dubar from Uniform Choice. Or maybe if you can imagine a jam session featuring members of Straight Ahead (in particular the drummer) and Gai it might sound like this. I doubt Uniform Choice or Straight Ahead are influences, but getting at why Frenzy sounds so different from your typical noise-punk band requires a bit of creativity with your analogies. Beyond the sound, these songs build and release tension in the way only a talented veteran band like this can. Sure, there is a lot of mediocre noise-punk out there, but there are also plenty of records like this that are innovative, exciting, and a blast to listen to.