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Despondents - The Despondents

  by Adrian Huggins

published: 2 / 10 / 2010

Despondents - The Despondents
Label: Dirty Water Records
Format: CD


Relentless, if somewhat formulaic 70's-influenced punk on eponymous debut album from Leeds-based band, the Despondents

Funny things press releases, and I’ve definitely thought it before and probably said it, but they can make the person reading them go "Eh? Are you for real?’ A point in case is with Leeds band, the Despondents. There is a quote in these lads’ press release about them becoming disillusioned with the music scene in their city. This made me a little confused as some of the best alternative bands over the last few years have come from that very city including Pulled Apart By Horses, That Fucking Tank and Chickenhawk. I wanted to know just where the hell these guys were coming from and exactly what they were "disillusioned with." Was this the words of a band who were locked up in their bedrooms blissfully unaware that they live in and are part of one of the best scenes for alternative music in England? Well, at points on their debut self-titled album I think maybe so. There is nothing new and which hasn't been done a fair few times before over the last few hundred years, but that aside their pace is relentless. They crash in with ‘Dressed in Black’, ‘Stoned’ and ‘Got Nothing to Lose’ early on in the album and don’t let up. I actually quite enjoyed this. Fair play to these guys. They have set the bar high and have managed to carry it through. Later on in the album we have moments like the archetypal ‘77 British punk of ‘Gotta Getaway (England Sucks)’, ‘Get Out of My Face’ and ‘If God Exists’ that yet again keep that break neck pace and spit and the old punk attitude that they aspire and look up to. It is always a tough one to call is punk rock, as it has been done and done many a time before and there are precious few bands who really bring something completely new to the table and push the boat out a bit. I don’t see this album doing that, but I will say that the Despondents are doing a good job of keeping the spirit alive and surely that’s what punk rock is really about. Just don’t write off your fellow Leeds bands, boys.

Track Listing:-
1 Dressed In Black
2 Stoned
3 California
4 Got Nothing To Lose
5 Schizophrenia
6 You Stupid Girl
7 Gotta Getaway (England Sucks)
8 Get Out (Of My Face)
9 If God Exists
10 Out Of My Head
11 Talking About Love
12 So Hung Up On You
13 Advice
14 Grand Theft Auto

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