Cobra Skulls - Agitations (Cover Artwork)

Cobra Skulls

Agitations (2011)

Fat Wreck Chords

Cobra Skulls' third full-length, Agitations starts with a misleading kind of psychobilly kind of Motörhead spin with "Six Degrees". The remainder of the album barely follows suit, though, and progresses to just a good, fun, breath-of-fresh-air kind of punk album.

Sparing no energetic prowess, Agitations is fierce from the start. Vocal harmonization, shaky fronts, violent guitars, and lyrical simplicity play into the album's cohesiveness. The listener never finds themselves bored, though at times it does come off as a tad generic. Only at times, though.

The cadence of the verse of "Iron Lung" almost puts the listener to mind of the Clash, whereas "Now You Know", "The Mess" and "The Mockery" take bits and pieces of several punk subgenres to create an almost Frankenstein's monster of music. They still manage to maintain their own stylistic signature, though, which makes this album surprising, entertaining, and far from dull.

The highest standout track on the album, "On & On" takes several clichés and makes them moot and irrelevant, screaming "Just because it kills us doesn't make us stronger," and "Don't tell me it's darkest before it's gotta get lighter." Cobra Skulls illustrate proficiency in removing any credibility from common clichés and punching holes through lyrical simplicity.

Agitations finishes with the smooth acoustic song "Believe" for an overall strong close, slightly reminiscent of a Matt Skiba solo piece. Fans, newcomers, whoever will find Agitations to be a well-rounded, entertaining album full of genre-bending aggression and tongue-in-cheek lyrics, satisfying ears tuned to just about anything.