Berlin's Beatsteaks return with their long appreciated fourth album "Smack Smash". The rise of the Beatsteaks started 1995, a deal with Epitaph and three highly triumphant records later the band finds itself at the crossroads where the next record decides between total superstardom (at least in Germany) or mediocrity. That is the time when Smack Smash is released.
It is always a great moment when you got the new record of a great band which predecessors blew you away. Even more when the band promised "the best record up to date". The moment even gets better when you hear the first beats and you know it was worth waiting for.
That´s what happended to me when I first heard the new Beatsteaks record. Even for me as a non-die-hard-fan of the band the anticipation was immense. What these guys put on vinyl rocks from second one. Snotty, bold as brass, melodic, original and full of fresh ideas - it´s all on the 12 tracks of this record what modern punk rock has to offer. The bandwidth varies from poppy stuff up to Ramones-like. Influences such as early punk rock like the Misfits or the Clash can also be heard as their love for modern punk and rock like Alkaline Trio or even the Strokes. Especially to mention maybe the homage to Joe Strummer "Hello Joe", "Hand In Jand", "Monster" or "What's Coming Over You".
Compared to it's predecessors the record is quite different, they are another step away from the more hardcore inspired tunes from past days. One of the bands home games always was performing on stage. So they captured the energy of a live show on the recording by having a raw and "live" stuio sound. It´s just plugged in and played their asses off.
The record is perfect for the band as a comeback record. Concerning it's effect on everyone who badly was looking forward to this record it could be described perfectly as a pendant to last year's Rancid masterpiece "Indestructible", it´s the record the Get Up Kids hopefully have made with the "Guilt Show" and The Hives really would love to have recorded.