Thursday, 6 December 2012

The Men - Open Your Heart

Another band that mixes styles with ease, Open Your Heart is a lot more straightforward though than the Wiccans LP and indeed previous Men releases, jumping between styles, but generally between songs, rather than making a scatterbrained leap mid-song from one genre to another. It's got a bunch of straight-punk numbers, albeit ones that are done-up and drawn-out in the more epic manner of those worldbuilding Fucked Up sprawls. It's punk rock and it knows it, the opener shamelessly ripping off Stiff Little Fingers' all-time classic punk song Suspect Device, the title track borrowing possibly even more egregiously from the Buzzcocks similarly eternal and undying punk paean to teenage bad decisions Ever Fallen In Love. Beyond the punk, there's a spacey country shiver on the song Country Song (obvious clearly labelled as a warning for those 'anything but rap and country' illiterate bros), another sweet country hum on the wistful bummer Candy and some of the dizzy wailing noise-rock that they've dealt in more in the past on Presence before the album ends with Ex-Dreams a slab of mellow-but-insistent rise-and-fall hypnopunk in the vein of Husker Du's Reoccurring Dreams.

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