Permanent Bastards - Emericans (Cover Artwork)
Staff Review

Permanent Bastards

Emericans (2009)


Permanent Bastards' first full-length, Emericans is an enthusiastic album that provides As the Eternal Cowboy fans a chance to relive the glory days (you know, if The Original Cowboy isn't already doing that for ya).

To be fair, the band has cooled down on the Against Me! fetish a bit from their earlier EP, Gun Club. But take a song like "Those Forgotten Pioneers" with its careful twang, heavy, rhythmic jangle in the guitars and the Gabel-esque yelp of their lead vocalist and it's a warm familiarity that resonates well. "Business Never Personal" even has that old west roll about it, like a slower "Rice & Bread"; "SOS" has a sure "Cliche Guevara" vibe about it. Meanwhile, there's this part towards the end of "White Tree" where uplifting gang vocals yell "Ohh-ohhh, oh Jenaaaaa!," and I'm convinced it's a tribute to some Hot Water Music song I can't quite place. But all this influence-wearing should sit just fine with listeners, because Permanent Bastards put their own excitable stamp on things.

Providing a suitable halfway point is the full-on acoustic break, but with lush production and vocal harmonies making it a really full song before the album gears back into its normal procession with the title track. The second half isn't toooo memorable, even as the band try and force out closer "Nobody Can Ever Make Me Turn Back" to epic proportions (seven minutes) and mixed results.

While not totally bombastic, Emericans is a fairly realized and complete effort. If you need some 2009 Canadian punk rock a bit polar to Old Crows / Young Cardinals, Emericans should do the trick.