The Explosion – Steal This EP

The Explosion
Steal This EP

Five songs, eight minutes. Here we go. I’m not sure why this wasn’t on a 7″, but CDs are fun too. Boston’s The Explosion got a lot of recognition, at least in the indie scene, when Jade Tree signed them to release their last full length. But there’s nothing of Jade Tree’s Promise Ring and Joan of Arc emo to this band. This is all-out punk-rock, along the lines of The Queers, Buzzcocks, and perhaps just a little high-power of Kid Dynamite.
“Dotted Lines” starts with a burst of pretty straight-forward punk-rock, including staccato drumming, spit-out vocals and backing vocals that shout along. “Blue” puts more emphasis on the rock, with some power guitar riffs and less shouted punk-rock-isms. You can hear some Sex Pistols influence here. I get a little bit more of the crazy energy punk of The Cramps on “Safety Belt,” and the singer seems to be shouting about GI Joe. “E.X.P.L.O.S.I.O.N” is apparently a live standard of the band, and it sounds pretty oi to me, with the band shouting “E.X.P.L.O.S.I.O.N.! Let’s go!” over and over. And, finally, “Turnaround” finishes things off before you even know it with some fantastic guitar, driving yet tight. This one is the best song here, at least because it’s more attitude, 70’s style punk than all-out shout-and-chorus. I wouldn’t mind an album’s worth of this style of rock.
The Explosion, quite honestly, doesn’t do much for me. It’s punk rock, pretty much the same kind of stuff I hear a lot of other bands do. There’s a million punk bands out there, and while it’s fun to play punk-rock and to go nuts to the sheer energy of the style, you really have to do something to differentiate yourself from everyone else to be good at it. And while The Explosion have a lot of style and a lot of energy, they don’t really stand apart.