Audacity: Hyper Vessels

The west coast has seen its fair share of punk bands. While largely questionable, some of these west coast punks are pretty good –really good. Audacity, a garage punk band with a long history and a growing catalog of music seems to be of the former. Their latest album, Hyper Vessels, released on Suicide Squeeze Records, is a testament to everything right with the west coast punk world.

Hyper Vessels! What a radical title. Audacity’s latest release is a goofy-fun sort of punk album. Hyper Vessels captures the popular west coast, burned out punk vibe, and adds a twist of lightheartedness to it –more so, catchy jams with a sort of juvenile fury to them.

Audacity kicks off Hyper Vessels with some rowdy tracks. “Counting The Days,” is full of distortion, some sweet guitar riffs, and thunderous drums. Across the next several tracks, Audacity continues to send a slew of worthy punk tunes at you. They’re all painfully enjoyable.

Before we shower Audacity with praise. Calling Audacity’s Hyper Vessels special would be going too far. It wouldn’t be fair to leave the album in the bargain bin either though. Hyper Vessels is genuine –or something. The entire listen is like a throwback to Jay Reatard. By some satanic ritual or raw talent, Audacity eked out a just plain damn good album.

Hyper Vessels introduces enough variation between tracks to keep things fresh. If you’re a fan of a little more hardcore punk, Audacity has you covered, if you want something a little more carefree? –it’s also there. “Dirty Boy,” is definitely of the former and a great listen. The song is grungy, intense, kind of bitter. It’s a rolling blast of percussive hits, powerful vocals, and guitar lines that scream, “I’m pissed off!” On the other hand, the eighth, “Fire,” starts little less intense, slowed down –mellowed out. It’s a nice contrast. Then, during the chorus, the song pops with a digestible jam. Of all Hyper Vessel’s songs though, “Baseball” stood out in particular. “Baseball,” just plain exemplifies that Reatard-Throwback vibe. The vocal style, the instrumental melodies, the way it all binds together –it’s like hearing the wails of a ghost.

Take the following statement with a grain of salt; Audacity, as a band, is the fearsome kung-fu master of west coast punk –or maybe they will be if they keep up the good work. Hyper Vessels isn’t a must listen, but if you find yourself a fan of Jay Reatard or even earlier Wavves, then you probably won’t want to miss this one. For those aiming to put an edge in their Spring season, Hyper Vessels will do the trick.

Rating: 7.5/10