Crow Bait - Three Tickle Guys [7-inch] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Pick

Crow Bait

Three Tickle Guys [7-inch] (2011)

Drunken Sailor

Crow Bait brings 2011 to a close with one of my favorite EPs of the year. With personnel from bands such as Iron Chic, Sister Kisser and Wax Phantom to name but a few, this conglomeration wastes no time in delivering five crisp tracks of melodic punk rock with the almost obligatory (albeit it less than some) gruff vocals

I'm not sure if this is a band that plays shows but they have the kind of sound that I'd love to be hearing live as I yelled along to the vocals in between swigging from numerous pints of Guinness. Probably the perfect Fest band? Okay, it's nothing new nor is it creating a totally new sound and as we would all probably privately (or publicly for some of us) admit, gruff melodicore really has attained its own status as a distinct genre these days. However, Crow Bait hammer out five tracks of quality tuneage which marks them out as being anything but prisoners of the familiar.

There are moments that the guitar sounds almost Dinosaur Jr-esque with the odd well placed lead but the overwhelming positive for me is the driven nature of the music and how uplifting I find it. It's had me bouncing up and down in my chair at work whilst I listen to the tracks over and over again eagerly awaiting the arrival of the actual vinyl version. That is what makes the record stand out above all else. Somehow Crow Bait has taken a highly popular sound and managed to breathe some life into it through the superiority of the songs and the enthusiasm in the delivery. For me that is quite a huge positive as I find much of what I hear far too generic these days, and it's getting harder for any band to actually put that stupid grin on my face when it sounds like it's almost a case of "going through the motions."

Hats off to the six labels that have worked together to release this beauty but being based in the U.K., I put this down as another fine Drunken Sailor release.