Royal Headache–Pity

Another Aussie outfit making a lot of figurative and literal noise is Royal Headache.  Their calling card is blisteringly high energy garage punk.  Standing out like a sore thumb from the current Australian scene, they provide short, sharp bursts of restless rock and roll inspired by early punk like The Buzzcocks .  While it’s hard to put your finger on what exactly makes a band sound authentic, as opposed to painfully derivative, Royal Headache provide it unrelentingly.  A major contributing factor is surely the raw, ragged voice of frontman Shogun.  Convincingly channeling Howard Devoto, he howls his way through Pity with an audible sneer, gleefully slagging off an idiot who doesn’t approve of him and his mates.  It’s a chugging, uncomplicated tune with an abrasive mix that starts on all cylinders and has nowhere to go from there.   That may sound like a bad thing, but it’s not.  Rather, it’s exactly what you’d want from a pumped-up outsider rant: a smarmy fuck you that starts and ends at maximum intensity.

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