DeeCRACKS’ 2021 LP ‘Serious Issues’ was by far the best of their career. On that LP, the vocals were still a little too aggressive for their often melodic punk sounds, but the Austrian band’s command of a riff and a catchy hook was still a cut above their earlier work, and a lot of other European punk acts. It was the kind of record that was capable of reminding people that Euro punk was far from dead, and even with DeeCRACKS dropping into some very familiar riffs on occasion, the speed and energy within the material suggested the band had a huge belief in the material.
Over the years, Austrian punks DeeCRACKS have often been a reliable source for good, honest, ragged street punk. Following the release of their ‘Call It A Day’ EP in 2013, the band have gone from strength to strength, but with its combination of straight up punky riffs, nods to 60s surf rock and occasional flirtation with something more commercial, their 2021 release ‘Serious Issues’ is easily one of their best LPs to date. In sixteen songs and less than half an hour, the band’s love of speed and directness is often at the forefront, but sharper songwriting and a few melodic twists also give the album a varied approach ensuring it never becomes stuck in a rut, or worse, sounds like “just another punk/Ramonescore album”. In punk terms, ‘Serious Issues’ is a bit special.
Over the years, Austrian punks DeeCRACKS have often been a reliable source for good, honest and ragged street punk, but with its combination of straight up punky riffs, nods to 60s surf rock and occasional bursts of something more hardcore, their 2021 release ‘Serious Issues’ could be one of their best LPs to date.
Dorkatron are a straight-up pop-punk band from Austria. Featuring ex-members of DeeCracks, the band arguably gained their most attention in 2017 when they released a Star Wars themed track, ‘May 4th’…at a timely moment in December. Such a funny thing to do. Perhaps they were inspired by the chaos and bewilderment of The Star Wars Holiday Special? Whatever, the main thing you need to know about Dorkatron is that despite not having the best name in the world, they create fine, fine melodic punk; better than a lot of the tunes given to the world by DeeCracks themselves, in fact, since, above all else the vocals on this second EP are hugely melodic. …And when it comes to a bit of longevity, that’s quite important.
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.