Believe me when I say that the Narcos Family Band have already put 2018 on the map and yes, I know that technically this EP came out in the tail end of 2017 but I simply do not care. And, what a way to start, what an EP, what a band. If you are not yet part of the family you need to get on it now.
So, what is it that’s getting my knickers in a twist? It’s the quite simply brilliant Pink Blues EP. Four tracks of psych, garage, punk rock and roll that sound like all your favourite bands like Pulled Apart by Horses, Fizzy Blood and Idles played by some stoner blues Captain Beefheart wannabes going by the names of the likes of Hot Meat and Uncle Shitty. Why are you even still reading, go and listen now!
From the opening buzzy guitar to the freak-out moments on some of the tracks this EP is a blast. Opener “Leopard Stealth (I’m Gone)” is a great song and opener. It kind of bugged me for a little while as it sounds like lots of other things without really sounding like any of them. The one theme it does have is that it has a touch of Idles singing the 1960s Batman TV series theme. Great vocal punctuation going across an addictive bass line
The pace is slowed for “Pretty Thing” but what makes this EP stand out so well is that it is incredibly cohesive whilst at the same time every song being completely different. This is actually one of my favourite style of songs; claustrophobic, slightly 60s tinged, with desperate vocals that increase with intensity. It creates an entire atmosphere, one which somehow you want to part of it despite its darker, acid-gone-wrong undertone. With the touch of trumpets and Hammond organ it like early Madness meets paranoid The Doors.
“Hammer It Shut” reminds me a little more of the Leeds based bands like Hookworms and Blacklisters. It has that expansiveness and call style vocals played over a psychededlic rock background. There is a more inclusive feel than some of the Northern England counterparts though, which feel more isolationist in comparison.
“Pink Blues” rounds off the EP perfectly for me. It is a very natural progression of the sound we have been hearing so far. It has a swamp rock pace and feel but with a great blues guitar solo over the top and again almost Doors-esque vocal patterns and, in many ways, sums up what The Narcos Family Band do so well. They write music that draws you in, makes you feel included whilst at the same time sticking twos up to those who don’t get it.
This EP is everything about being young, excited and hungry for life but more than just boys posing with guitars. It acknowledges history whilst being part of writing it. This EP will engulf you. I can’t wait for the album.
Pink Blues EP is out now