Caffeinds’ 2014 release, the ‘HeeBee GB’s EP’, was an unpolished affair, but there was no denying it was a recording made with love. It was rough and ready, as you’d expect something DIY to be, but above all, it was fun. It didn’t get a lot of attention within punk circles (certainly not on a big scale at any rate), but that didn’t stop the band trucking on. That same year’s full length release blended influences from Screeching Weasel and the Misfits in such a way that you couldn’t help but like it – warts ‘n’ all – while 2015’s ‘No Gods, No Decaf’, with an increased recording budget and a bratty attitude, was their best work to date. With each release, it’s been possible to hear Caffeinds making a necessary leap forward.
Second only to a great punk compilation, split releases are a great way to discover work by new bands, or else bands that might have slipped under your radar. This particular split release is a great primer for two acts who fit firmly under the Ramones-core banner, both geographically opposed but united in their love of simple and direct punk-pop. Issued via Swamp Cabbage Records (home to Caffiends, Up For Nothing and Gnarly Whales), the ‘Smile of the Tiger’ EP brings four fantastic previously unreleased tracks from Austria’s DeeCracks and Eastcoast US punks The New Rochelles.
Orlando’s Caffiends play good, raucous punk that’s strongly influenced by early Screeching Weasel, The Vindictives and NOFX. Since their formation, they’ve issued several EPs and shared stages with The Ataris, The Queers, Swingin’ Utters, Teenage Bottlerocket and numerous other top bands. 2014 saw the release of a sixteen track full-length release reissuing a bunch of out of print tunes, so for those who’ve yet to experience the band that record is an excellent way to catch up.