See Why Spoiler NYC is Banned in 38 States on Recent Release
Spoiler NYC’s nmost recent release, Banned in 38 States, which reached the masses exactly a fortnight ago, is a celebration in nihilism. It goes far beyond self-effacing. On every track, or so it seems, you’ve got the lead singer (Alan Robert) cussing liberally, hopping the train, calling himself a loser, etc.
The thing is, this celebration is a high-octane, pure energy type of affair that routinely clocks in at well over 100 Beats Per Minute—and over 110 BPM, at that. There’s little break in the raging of the electric guitars, or in the close parallel that the plugged in bass finds as it shadows its every movement. Plus, your man Tommy “The Kid” Clayton’s pounding away with steam on the cue sticks, ripping and rocketing all over the place so there’s no room for thought, breath, or respite.
Robert’s style easily lends itself to such tireless efforts. He doesn’t quite growl so much as sing, but rarely is his singing voice without a pretense of growling underneath (though it does happen). Most of the time, however, he’s too hardcore for any discernible melodies yet, when he busts out with them, it’s something to behold.
The hook on “High Friends” (in low places and f*cked up places, so he says) sounds good. The accessibility of the hook would make you think this tune is tongue-in-cheek, but the non-stop barrage of barbs in this same direction—he’s “going down in flames” on
“Ruined”—immediately belies that thought.
But as discreet segments of song, however, some of the tunes help to build upon this spirit, which very well might be when the project works best. “Dead To Me” has another winner of a melody on the hook, something that people would gravitate to in clubs or in live performances, (were they not incited to the point of physical altercations). Plus it clocks in at barely over a minute, and goes out as fast, as fervent, and as ferocious as it comes in on you.
Yes, this album is quite a ride. It’s a plummet into a world of danger that for many, is best experienced vicariously through speakers.