Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Super Narco Man

Following on from a similar theme where I posted about Tauranga’s Here Comes Alice (here), and where I reviewed the Rotorua-based Prophet Motive’s album Manifest Density for NZ Musician (here), there’s some ridiculously good independent music coming out of the Bay of Plenty region at present.

Good, as in straightforward no-holds-barred punk, and/or noise pop with a political bent.

In a week or two I will upload a feature I wrote on The Prophet Motive for NZ Musician (I’d like the magazine to have some sort of exclusivity for now, for whatever that’s worth) but in the meantime I want to draw your attention to a self-titled debut album for Super Narco Man, another Tauranga-based band, and another name-your-price Bandcamp release.
But where regular (and current) tour-mates The Prophet Motive make music that sits firmly in the folk-punk category, with an obvious left-leaning political allegiance in plain view for all, the music of Super Narco Man is a little more ambiguous – both stylistically and politically.

Sure, they’re angry as hell about something, and they take great delight in letting us know that, it’s just that these riffs chug and churn, and Super Narco Man’s big three-piece sound ticks far more formula-bound boxes. If this is a form of punk rock, and I think it is, then it’s a version which remains resolutely indebted to classic rock’s trademark touchstones. Not an altogether bad thing.

Super Narco Man won’t appeal to all, and it’s certainly very different to the sort of stuff usually covered on everythingsgonegreen. I’m more than a couple of listens into it now, and I’m still digesting how ferocious and raw it can be in parts. But I want to stop short of tagging it with the dreaded “acquired taste” label, because it’s far more deserving than that.

The key thing here is attitude, the keen sense of unrepentant DIY at play; this is hard-edged rock n roll from provincial New Zealand’s heartland, and the album has a certain rough-round-the-edges appeal that in many respects harks back to a bygone era long since lost. Grab a copy, take a listen, and decide for yourself …

Super Narco Man on Facebook

The Prophet Motive on Facebook

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