WEAK13 – ‘They Live’ (5/5)

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REVIEW by ZAK SLOMAN

‘They Live’ is the debut full-length studio album from Midlands rock three-piece Weak13.

Having initially formed back in 1999, it wasn’t until five years ago that the outfit, led by multi-talented frontman Nick J. Townsend, released their first EP, the critically-acclaimed ‘Live Ammo’.

Therefore, there has been a sense of eager anticipation for their latest offering from the band’s loyal fan base.

Straight from the opener ‘My Last Summer With You’, and right the way through to closer ‘Obey The Slave’, it is clear that it has been well worth the lengthy wait.

The sound is mainly a continuation of their experimentally-focused EP, drawing on a varied range of influences.

There’s a real mix of punk, grunge and metal, which in the hands of lesser talents would be a musical mess, but here, they effectively fuse the genres to create something that is truly a great listen.

The main lyrical themes deal with the criticism of the wealthy and powerful, and how they use their assets to manipulate ordinary people.

This is most evident in what is arguably the strongest track of the album, ‘Here Come The Drones’, which serves as both an attack on the establishment for forcing everybody else to act in their own best interests, and everyday citizens for not making enough of a stand against them.

Some of the songs do depart from this subject matter however, most noticeably ‘Loyal Coward’, which contains a more melodic sound and lyrics dealing with a man whose girlfriend has just walked on him.

Townsend’s vocals act as a liaison between the sound and lyrics, with a delivery that seems to be a fusion of Lemmy and Kurt Cobain.

‘They Live’ is an album which has much strength and depth, and serves as perfect justification for Weak13’s tag as one of the biggest names in contemporary British underground music.

Also, it provides a refreshing antidote to some of the shallow, poorly constructed popular music out there currently.

TOP TRACK: ‘Here Come The Drones’

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