Civil Rats - Your Dummest Friends [EP] (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Civil Rats

Your Dummest Friends [EP] (2023)


Civil Rats play jangly punk that calls back to both early CGBG’s and classic garage rock. Their songs are loud, combustible, and hooky. If you threw the band back in time they’d be right at home opening for the Beat or the Waitresses.

But, while their songs sound bright, albeit a little bit edgy, the lyrics feature a bit of a darker twist on their new ep Your Dummest Friends. Songs like “Party Mood” and “Don’t know your name” are about having a self-destructive neurosis. The band doesn’t want to go out and have a good time- they want to hide at home. They get nervous when seeing someone they know because they can’t remember that person’s name. It’s become such a problem that they wrote a song about it, and then in a bit of irony, wrapped it into thumb-snapping beat.

Yet, that’s the most fun part. They are having fun with anxiety, depression, and misery. “Quantum Leap,” which is informed by the Ramones darker, melancholy early ‘80s period, is a punk response to Cher’s “If I could turn back time,” all while borrowing the trappings on a decent ‘80s sci-fi show. Plus, everyone loves Scott Bakula.

Civil Rats have a lot of promise. These early tracks show some real individuality and some great classic power-pop-punk craft. Really, the band’s next stop is obvious- expand this identify to a full album and they might just have a classic on their hands.