Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Beaten Hearts rock!

Ever notice that the long-running joke about Canadian bands sucking doesn’t pertain to punk music? I don’t know what it is about Canadians, but they’ve always “gotten” punk rock. Maybe there’s something in the water. I once knew a guy who came back from a trip to Canada and swore that the beer tasted different…

Hailing from the beautiful Maritime province of New Brunswick, the Beaten Hearts are the latest in a long line of excellent punk bands from north of the border. Featuring the talents of lead singer Brian LaManna (ex Valentine Killers), Ray Auffrey (ex Bad Luck #13), Fear of Lipstick’s Derek Lounder and Jeremy O’Neill, and red-hot lead guitarist Tyler Boutilier, this Moncton five-piece is not exactly a gang of newcomers. And it shows in their music. Remember good old “punk rock n' roll”? It was kind of a happening thing circa the early to mid ‘90s when the likes of the New Bomb Turks, Humpers, and Devil Dogs reigned supreme. The Beaten Hearts take me back to those days. And, damn, they do this style well! Blending elements of early rock n’ roll with the flamethrower ferocity of its ‘70s punk antecedents (Dead Boys, Saints, Teenage Head), the Beaten Hearts make no attempt to be current or cool or progressive. They just put the pedal to the medal and rock. And while the cliché about bands of this particular style is that they’re “a lot of fun live”, what I appreciate about the Beaten Hearts is that they know how to make good records as well. Like any band with a ‘50s influence, they really understand the importance of a simple and well-written song. Debut single “Red Line Gurls” is one of the catchiest tunes of this (or any!) year. It’s full of tasty guitar hooks, handclaps, and ooh-and-ah backing vocals. Hear it once, and it'll be stuck in your head all day. “Rhonda Lynn” is another revved-up toe-tapping rocker, while second single “Badlands” shows a harder, nastier edge a la the Pagans/Rocket from the Tombs. And for something completely different, “Red Line Gurls” B-side “(This Is) How It Ends” slows the tempo for a melancholic but ballsy pop vibe. It’s pretty “rock”, but in a really good way. Cool tune!

Without a doubt, this is one of the best of the new bands to come on the scene since I stopped doing Now Wave. So you can see a big reason why I’m writing again - because it’s exciting to know that there’s great rock n’ roll out there. And if you have the good taste to like great rock n’ roll, check the Beaten Hearts out! The “Red Line Gurls” 7” is out Sonic Jett, and “Badlands” is out on the band’s own Maladroit Records. So hey, go buy some vinyl!

- L.R.


  1. I only buy vinyl records so people can see me buy them and walk around with them... Just so I look cool. I go home and throw them away in opaque trash bags.

    By the way, kids around the Cincinnati parts have taken to calling records "vinyls" I will NOT stand for this and anytime I hear it, no matter where Im at or even if Im in the convo or not I yell out "fuckwad off the bow"

    Fucking kids.

  2. "Vinyls"? Really? I applaud your contempt! Wow, that "S" really does make a difference...and not in a good way.

  3. Its actually hard to go into record stores anymore. Tons of fuckwads.

    Onetime a fucking cop was in there. A plain clothes fucker. He had his cop radio blaring about busting some suspected vodka smugglers in gatorade bottles at some event... they were doing very broad searcnes of the crowd.

    It made me fucking sick and want to leave. Here were some pig motherfuckers in MY spot. MY store. Doing MY thing. I almost asked the reps at Shake it to have them turn their radios down for aesthetic purposes OR put on some THE DICKS... I just left instead.

    Distance doed my opinions good.

  4. "Vinyls" is a non-word that's quite annoying to hear from the mouths of babes. Hell, even some respected music store owners have taken up the term. The overuse might force Webster's hand to include it in the next dictionary update.