By Jason Duarte
If you're reading this, chances are you're familiar with the annual Insubordination Fest in Baltimore and if you've been, you've probably eaten Sick Sick Burgers in the alley at some point. My hungry, wandering belly was how I first heard about these guys, and now they grace my turntable with their second full-length, Gates of Home.
"Pick and Choose" is a strong opener. Immediately, there's recognizable influence by Joe Strummer. The song is particularly catchy, and sticks out like a sore thumb on the album as one of its best tracks.
A little deeper into the album, "Marietta" speeds its vibe. It's reminiscent of early Cure songs (as is the bass line of "New Shoe Leather"), particularly when it comes to the clean bass and vocal tracks.
Sick Sick Birds take the melancholy, slightly-gothy and progressive characteristics of bands like The Cure and The Smiths and add a punk rock/garage touch, making something new.
The songs on this album tease the listener a bit, keeping the vibe steady and bringing it up in the chorus with catchy leads, but they don't let it go on too long, thus creating an awesome ebb and flow effect.
This is a strong album that brings new stuff to the scene, and I can feel it's already rooting itself into "Best of 2012" lists.
Stream Gates of Home: