Few people here will already have heard of The Barber. These four crazy Russians started up back in 2012 and toured through their vast homeland after producing some EPs. After a couple of changes in their line-up and a switch from chaotic punk to punky rock & roll, The Barber seems ready to storm the European front with a debut LP. Time to unleash some General Thrashing!
From opening song Burn Not Leaving Ash, also the band’s motto in life, it becomes clear what The Barber stands for: no nonsense up-tempo party songs. They waste no time with fancy intros, outros or sound effects, but fill every second on the album with unbridled energy. Building up towards the chorus, you can practically see the guitars prancing in a desperate attempt to not go crazy, only to be set loose in the catchy chorus. Every song also has a slower, yet incredibly groovy intermezzo accompanied by a solo Motörhead would be proud of. Soundtracks to a great biker adventure would be songs like Working Class Anti-Heroes, Don’t Deprive The Boozer Of His Booze (some wise words there!) and Blackened Soul. Waving sideburns, burning rubber and prancing guitars are all I can see listening to these cozy yet very groovy tracks.
Everything in this album shouts a tribute to Sir Kilmister and his merry gang of Rock&Roll heroes (the intro on Now It Is indisputably reminds us of Be My Baby). And yet The Barber creates a unique sound by throwing some fast old school punk (cf. The Bronx) and groovy New York hardcore (cf. Sick Of It All) in the mix. These influences are felt in songs like One Same Blood, which gave me the strong urge to grab an old rusty bike and a baseball bat, head to a London suburb and stare at old people. Thrill Killing and White Rabbits might be the darkest, most hardcore and least Rock&Roll tracks on the album, but here too the genres inevitably intermingle. Selfexorcism and Amen are other examples of the complete inseparability of Rock&Roll, punk and NYCH on this album: the former leans more towards punk but loses its venom because of the Rock&Roll infused into it, the latter is too groovy to just be Rock&Roll. The result is a quite pleasing collection of songs allowing you to turn off the brain switch and just go with the rush!
The Barber combines the speed of old school punk, the groove of New York hardcore and the party mode of Motörhead’s Rock&Roll. The recurrent lyrical theme is, of course, booze and parties in an uncompromising, nihilistic but still positive atmosphere. Lemmy approves!
Release date: April 1st, 2016
Label: Zero Hero Recordings
1. Burn Not Leaving Ash
2. One Same Blood
3. Working Class Anti-Heroes
4. Don’t Deprive the Boozer of His Booze
5. Blackened Soul
7. Thrill Killing
8. White Rabbits
10. Now It Is