Shock Nagasaki play a very classic brand of punk rock that will have individuals singing along even when they have only heard the disc once or twice. “1968” starts the disc out, and the band only plays for about seventy seconds on the song before moving into the equally catchy and longer “I Get High on Low Society”. The style of music that Shock Nagasaki play is similar to that of a Lars Frederiksen and The Bastards and earlier Rancid, but focuses on the earlier UK 82 sound more than either of those acts. The band only needs about two minutes to make an impression on each individual who was lucky enough to pick up this album.
The only thing that I would change about “Year Of The Spy” is the short runtime of the album. The band cuts out well before the half-hour mark, but the one upside to that is that each song on the album has a high replay value. The band does not need to play the most difficult guitar lines or try to wow listeners with their technical ability, but rather Shock Nagasaki creates some of the catchiest streetpunk songs outside of The Vigilantes. The band is one of the premiere acts doing this music style, and what would seem to me as the dream tour right now is if the band could get together with Far From Finished and The Lillingtons. The reason why I said The Lillingtons would be because a song like “Deconstruct, Decontrol” has the same Ramones-influenced sound as some of The Lillingtons’ earlier work.
The more introspective arrangements during this track begins to give individuals a second facet in which to look at Shock Nagasaki at. This more introspective sound is something that is continued during “Classified Information”. The fact that the band can use this style to their advantage in incorporating it into more than one track shows that the band has some maturity. The band creates a solid album with “Year of the Spy”, and even though so many bands have tried to do the same thing stylistically, Shock Nagasaki has the ability and skills to go forth and impress. I’m sure Shock Nagasaki will have more albums out in the years to come, and I know I will be one of the first people to check them out. The band is an asset to punk rock, that is for sure.
Top Tracks: Curse of the Lady Be, I Get High On Low ociety
Shock Nagasaki – Year Of The Spy / 2006 TKO / 12 Tracks / http://www.shocknagasaki.com / http://www.tkorecords.com / Reviewed 20 October 2006