New Grenada – The Iron Triangle EP

New Grenada
The Iron Triangle EP

When New Grenada release their own songs, their music is a quirky mix of naive rock, pop, and punk. The Detroit band are founders of Plumline Records, a small indie label that promotes releases by a few other bands in addition to themselves, including Canadian lo-fi rock darling Julie Doiron. On The Iron Triangle, however, New Grenada pays homage to 70s and 80s punk with a cute 3″ CD of covers of songs by the Dead Kennedys, Buzzcocks, Black Flag, and Bad Brains, among others. In classic DIY punk spirit, the packaging is a simple photocopied insert featuring zine-style cut-and-paste artwork.
While I’m not familiar with the original versions of all the songs covered, New Grenada convincingly emulates the sound of original punk era. Sloppy guitars and drums hold together just enough to keep things from collapsing as various band members sneer, rant, and howl their way through illegible lyrics with great gusto. The first two tracks, “Hyperactive Child” by Dead Kennedys and “Boredom” by Buzzcocks, stand out the most. On the seventh and final track, Black Flag’s “Damaged,” everything implodes into a wonderful crashing pandemonium guaranteed to have parents screaming at their kids to turn down the volume. Despite the heavy noise factor, the production on the disc is very full and clean. There’s little danger of blowing a speaker (or an eardrum) while listening to this disc.
While the covers on The Iron Triangle won’t add much to the legacy of these well-known punk legends – and I highly doubt that was the intention – this is a fun listen. The Iron Triangle is clearly a labor of love and a great way for the band to acknowledge some of their past musical influences.