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A Wilhelm Scream - Partycrasher (Cover Artwork)

A Wilhelm Scream

A Wilhelm Scream: PartycrasherPartycrasher (2013)
No Idea

Reviewer Rating: 4
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Contributed by: BryneBryne
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Partycrasher is A Wilhelm Scream's first full-length since 2007's Career Suicide, a wide layoff by just about any measurement, but one that feels especially canyon-like given what's changed between now and then: six years ago, there weren't a billion bands of questionable accord jockeying for attent.
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Partycrasher is A Wilhelm Scream's first full-length since 2007's Career Suicide, a wide layoff by just about any measurement, but one that feels especially canyon-like given what's changed between now and then: six years ago, there weren't a billion bands of questionable accord jockeying for attention from increasingly capricious music fans. Record royalties and listener attention spans weren't quite shrinking in concert with one another yet. Things were different and simpler then, and this band's sound continues to serve as a reminder of that.

Positive vibes abound, though. Add the reverence, recognition and pure "wow" factor of No Idea releasing Partycrasher – When was the last time No Idea had a band this high-profile on their roster? Most bands either peak on No Idea or become big after leaving the label – and it's hard to not get excited about the whole thing.

Not only that, but the most important fact about the aforementioned layoff is that it wasn't really a layoff: A Wilhelm Scream didn't actually go anywhere; they released a solid, self-titled EP in 2009 and have more or less toured regularly throughout the late 2000s and early 2010s. Maybe AWS are outliers, or maybe that's proof that in this era of the music industry, a band doesn't need to consistently crap out a new collection of songs every two years to remain relevant. Maybe taking their time and ensuring everything is as perfect as it can be is a good strategy for a band to have. Who knew?

As is expected, Partycrasher feels complete and calculated. The unpredictability and virtuosity from A Wilhelm Scream's other work remain, but those elements are layered with a palpable exuberance that seems like a byproduct of the "layoff." The dizzying riffs of opener "Boat Builders" and follow-up "The Last Laugh" rocket through the speakers. It's immediately apparent that after the often captivating tone and tempo experimentation on Ruiner and Career Suicide, AWS have broken down their sound to its bare components on this album, and then augmented them for maximum impact.

Nuno Pereira's vocals have never sounded better; his voice is much higher in the mix on Partycrasher than on past albums, which makes his gritty howl that much more effective. He seamlessly navigates around the world-class band behind him on "Gut Sick Companion" while drummer Nicholas Pasquale Angelini's fills create calculated chaos with the joyful riffing of guitarists Mike Supina and Trevor Reilly and the rapid-fire bass playing of Brian Robinson. Same for "Ice Man Left a Trail" and "Sassaquin" with their mesmerizing harmonics from Supina and Reilly. He even impressively elevates on "Wild Turkey," a song that impressively maintains its tempo through multiple fills from Angelini.

Partycrasher isn't a comeback record or a return to form. If anything, it's a loud affirmation that A Wilhelm Scream are still one of the most creatively engaging and thoroughly fun and exciting bands in punk. The kings are alive and well.

 

 
People who liked this also liked:
The Flatliners - CavalcadeThe Lawrence Arms - Oh! Calcutta!A Wilhelm Scream - Career SuicidePropagandhi - Failed StatesThe Flatliners - Dead LanguageRed City Radio - TitlesA Wilhelm Scream - A Wilhelm Scream [12 inch]The Menzingers - On the Impossible PastThe Lawrence Arms - MetropoleThe Lawrence Arms - The Greatest Story Ever Told

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Fine Print: The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. We are not respon sible for them in any way. Seriously.
TheJerk22 (April 28, 2014)

Never have anything bad to say about A Wilhelm Scream

yoitsnotrerun (December 5, 2013)

i've not been a huge fan of this kind of sound since i was 16, so i slept on AWS when they first came out (as AWS), but i gave some listen to mute print and ruiner though.. so i bought this (on amazing mixed-blue vinyl) mostly because it came out on no idea and had nice cover art. at first listen it was how i expected: ok the really know how to play, it's technical, a good record but not really my cake.. at second listen fuck i'm starting to enjoy this much more, and i'd say i like it more than their first two. and you people say career suicide is better than this?

half_head (November 16, 2013)

Fucking awesome

Dahlin (November 12, 2013)

I'm a big 'Ruiner' fan and felt they had lost some of the interesting tempo changes and vocal hooks in 'Career Suicide'...but this new album has both! For my personal tastes, Wilhelm is the best band out there today.

sadastronaut (November 12, 2013)

Also for the guy looking for bands similar to AWS, the best examples I can come up with are everything after (and including) The Element of Sonic Defiance from Strung Out, and everything from Today's Empires and onwards from Propagandhi.

sadastronaut (November 12, 2013)

their best album and my personal favourite of the past 5 years. so good and really untouched by all the generic punk coming out these days. sassaquin and ice man left a trail are my JAMS

filbunke (November 11, 2013)

I'm not hating on this or anything. It's a very good technical effort but to me it just lacks songs to back it up. It has some good parts but a lot of it is forgettable. I wanted to like this more. Maybe my taste in music has changed as well. I probably would have loved this 5-6 years ago.

rhynomcgrath (November 9, 2013)

Career suicide comparisons? Can we not talk about how this has many of the things in it that made ruiner great?

RiotRiot81 (November 9, 2013)

Da fuckin way an axe should be played!

theproblemwithfire (November 9, 2013)

This took me a little longer to get into that other releases. Part of that was probably because its been so long that they put anything out, but I've been listening to this almost nonstop since its release. Another solid release in the AWS discog that contains all the elements that made prior albums great without sounding like a rehashing of them. These guys are just as technically proficient, or more (that bass playing) than Propagandhi or Strung out and can't be touched by their contemporaries when it comes to song writing chops and dynamics.

Blackjaw_ (November 8, 2013)

It's pretty good, but I'm having trouble getting into it. I still love their old stuff, especially Career Suicide, but my tastes have probably changed too much for me to enjoy new stuff from them.

uscbdaddy (November 8, 2013)

I think the lyrics are still pretty good on this one. Trevor wrote most of the lyrics from prior releases, but on this one I think the other guys contributed more, even the new guitar player. Maybe thats why some people feel like the lyrics might be weaker (although I don't).

davebrave4 (November 7, 2013)

Haanz I agree, I've always thought their lyrics were pretty good. I remember when Career Suicide came out there was a discussion here about how they said "fuck" too much. I think they give the lyrics some oomph and an urgency that is in keeping with the rest of those songs' lyrics. And while I do like the ST EP, I don't like it nearly as much as any of their full-lengths, and I'm counting on this new one being better.

Haanz (November 7, 2013)

VinceMcMahon (20 hours ago)
porksoda (12 hours ago)

I'm not liking it nearly as much as Career Suicide. After the first few tracks, everything kind of blends together. I feel like it lacks standouts like The Horse.

Absolutely. The lyrics are not that great, either, but i guess that was never part of their appeal in the first place.

--

Will I like this if I wasn't particularly enamoured with the self-titled EP? What you say about the lyrics worries me, because the lyrics are the thing that made AWS hit home as something personal to me, and not just another boring technical band singing about fucking dragons or some shit.

danperrone (November 7, 2013)

anchors is great if you're looking for something similar to AWS.

uscbdaddy (November 7, 2013)

To royalt below:
I have the same taste in music. These seem pretty obvious, but some others that are similar would be Strung Out, No Trigger, Propagandhi, Heartsounds, Belvedere, This is a Standoff, even some Authority Zero.

royalt (November 7, 2013)

Help me out people: I love A Wilhelm Scream...a lot. Ever since I started listening to them, I've been having a hard time finding other shit that is as good. I need a good mix of the technical, the melodic yet hard. Basically, give me some stuff in the same vein as A Wilhelm Scream. All suggestions are welcome, however obvious as they may seem.

BizzyBizonian (November 6, 2013)

Amazing album! On repeat!

Luc18 (November 6, 2013)

It seems like a lot of great albums have been released this year.

davebrave4 (November 6, 2013)

Well the first three paragraphs are for upping the BUZZ before you get to the review proper.

telegraphrocks (November 6, 2013)

The first 3 paragraphs are useless. This is a "review", yes?

mclz (November 6, 2013)

Are there any songs the band was playing live but didn't make it on the album? I can't remember.

VinceMcMahon (November 6, 2013)

porksoda (12 hours ago)

I'm not liking it nearly as much as Career Suicide. After the first few tracks, everything kind of blends together. I feel like it lacks standouts like The Horse.

Absolutely. The lyrics are not that great, either, but i guess that was never part of their appeal in the first place.

crotchrot (November 6, 2013)

Sassaquin

skeetopunk01 (November 6, 2013)

This record will grow on you if it doesn't catch on your first listen. Give it a chance to work it's magic. This record and the new Swellers album are both in my top 5 for this year.

TibbsTastic (November 6, 2013)

I can see the appeal of this record, and the first few tracks are great. It just didn't completely win me over.

macbethmystery (November 6, 2013)

simply superb, even though I guess Career Suicide is still my favourite AWS album.

this band a l w a y s delivers

gorilla (November 6, 2013)

Everything on this page reads like a bunch of surgeons discussing the outcome of a nose job.

porksoda (November 6, 2013)

I'm not liking it nearly as much as Career Suicide. After the first few tracks, everything kind of blends together. I feel like it lacks standouts like The Horse.

uscbdaddy (November 6, 2013)

Album of the year. Can't stop listening to it.

danperrone (November 5, 2013)

so freaking awesome. i too was a little bummed at first that it wasn't as thrashy as career suicide but damn...the more i listen to this, the more i realize how fantastic it is. they've been the best band in punk rock for the last ten years.

fuckyeah568 (November 5, 2013)

This album is just about perfect. It combines the technical badassness they have acquired over the years with the warmth and catchiness of their Smackin' Isaiah era releases. Its just fuckin great to know that there is at least one band out there you can count on to always put out a record that is as good or better that the last. We can only hope now that they release a guitar tab book like Propagandhi did so I can learn this shit. And that they come play in Texas someday.....

MDJoyce (November 5, 2013)

Wow, this album blew me away. I had always enjoyed AWS, but I hate metal and never thought of their sound as one of my favorites. How wrong I was. This record has changed all that--every single track blew my mind. What a devastating LP. Unbelievable and awesome. I can't really think of anything else to say, other than buy this thing.

hobbzoid (November 5, 2013)

try to find a single review of this record that doesn't mention "it's been 6 years since the band's last full-length"

daveyjones (November 5, 2013)

i'm glad they took their time; it shows. a really well crafted effort. well written, well executed, well produced. hell, even well mixed.

davebrave4 (November 5, 2013)

Great review, especially that last line. I haven't heard the new one yet, but "complete and calculated" was how I would describe Career Suicide, so I'll be interested to see if they've taken that any further.

longshot (November 5, 2013)

Fucking hell, half of this review doesn't even talk about the music on said record.

nocomply (November 5, 2013)

Everything said in the review is totally spot on. This record is great. The lyrics as well-crafted. Just like all AWS records, the replay value is extremely high.

btdan (November 5, 2013)

At first I was disappointed that it wasn't balls-to-wall shred like Career Suicide was. Then I realized I don't care because this album does it all so perfectly that it balances everything I love about this band in one listening experience. The tempo changes and technicality is still prevalent and the lyrics are still catchy as all hell.

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