I love it when I discover something new and dripping with punk. I’d never heard The School Jerks before – they hail from Toronto, Canada and have put out a few 7″s, but they’ve now released their debut album. It’s a real cracker.
In amongst all the dross, you sometimes find a band who really capture the rawness of punk – think of The Spears for example. Well The School Jerks remind me of a cross between The Germs and early Black Flag – they really put out! Angry, pissed vocals, distorted, Gregg Ginn-style guitar and short desperate songs blast the listener unexpectedly, whilst recovery from this is made possible by the broad smile that the authentic rage produces.
The vocalist, with Jerry A style bloody forehead in the photo above, sounds uncannily like the late, great Darby Crash, but with the addition of a bit of the Chris Barrows sound to his voice which just makes me like them even more – and check out the marvellous, hand drawn cover art which appears to feature, amongst other things, a drawing of a naked man being apprehended by a Police officer – any album thus endowed is a sure fire winner in Rip It Up’s book.
It’s hard for me to pad this review out, because the directness and power of this thirteen tracker makes you understand that brevity is the order of the day, and if you can say it in 1 minute 15 seconds, then why pad it out to 4 minutes, huh?
Get this, on the always excellent Grave Mistake records. I’ve chucked in a couple of Soundcloud tracks too, because how can you go wrong?