The Downtown Struts – Victoria!

© 2012 Pirates Press Records
Rating: ★★★★★★★★★☆

Ok folks, here it is, Victoria! the brand new full length from Chicago’s Downtown Struts. I’ve long been a fan of the punk rock sounds coming out of the Windy City and this newest venture doesn’t disappoint; equal parts rock and roll and angst all rolled together with enough ennui to bend the ear of the most cynical among us.

The tracks are longer and a tad slower than my attention span generally allows for, but the song writing and delivery is in a such a manner that I’ll sit transfixed through the entire album (and on a bad traffic day, I’ll sit through it twice) I’ve talked about bands that are wearing this new mantle before: Dead to Me, The Loved Ones, Hollowpoints. The list could go on, but I hope you get the point. The music is full on rock and roll but loaded with introspection and damn I do love some introspection.

What you get with Victoria! is 10 tracks that set a great stage for sad story telling; telling tales of a life lost in America. To me it symbolizes lost glory, a pining for halcyon days but retaking the faded sense of hope. The album encompasses a dying ember on a still burning torch. Not everything is lost, but what exactly does it take to rekindle that waning flame?

The bottom line is one of the best new releases that I’ve heard so far this year. If you’re a punk fan that also gives a shit about song writing and you can feel the heavy weight of words, especially in combination with music that matches the spirit of the lyrics, then grab a copy of Victoria! You can find more info on the band here: http://www.facebook.com/thedowntownstruts

–Jerry Actually

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