Iron Chic - Not Like This (Cover Artwork)

Iron Chic

Not Like This (2010)

Dead Broke / 86'd

I firmly believe that one day a book will be written about Latterman and the incredible number of (similarly incredible) bands that its members have gone on to form out of its ashes. This book will be essential to Punks of the Future (I'm calling that one as a potential future band name) to both keep track of who is in what band and the general timeline of the recorded output of said bands, and to also put into perspective the powerful effect of the songs of this select group of bands had on punks of all ages in the first decade of the 21st century.

As to what the debut full-length from one such post-Latterman band actually sounds like, Iron Chic's songs are each very anthemic with a lot of vocal harmonies backed by '90s emo guitars, along with those very distorted bass tones that always have a heavy presence in my favorite songs on the album; the drums range from keeping a solid mid-tempo presence to the full punk rock gallop in a few places. All of these elements are met with lyrics that demand to be sung along to.

The second track, "Time Keeps on Slipping (Into the Cosmic Future)" starts fast and stays urgent even into the bass-and-vocals bridge that eventually crescendos back to the full band, urging the listener to sing along to the final vocal refrain. The moment is so perfect that you can see the inevitable stage dives and sweaty side hugs bound to occur during a live performance.

The next track, "Timecop" keeps the same tempo and urgent feel as the end of track 2 but ups the heartfelt sing-along quotient, telling the listener that "we can recalibrate," and between these two songs the experience of the whole album can be felt--heartfelt and true to make even the most cynical of punks raise up his/her glass and want to make their ideals a reality again and remind you, like in the final track, "Every Town Has an Elm Street," that "Home is where we are today."

If the aforementioned book is ever actually written, Iron Chic are due for an entire chapter on Not Like This for being a wholly unique record that encapsulates the aesthetic that, for lack of a better term, the Latterman-core bands represent that makes me a sucker for records like this.