Sløtface offer slyly subversive pop punk with Empire Records EP

Empire RecordsNorwegian pop punk band Sløtface come with some genuine commitment under their belt. The band's single "Sponge State" came alongside a video of the band joining a protest against the actions of mining companies. But does this radical nature translate into sound on their new, Empire Records EP?

Definitely, although those expecting to find shout-y swear-y anarcho-punk should look elsewhere. Sløtface are slyly subversive, camouflaging their inherently revolutionary nature in a swirl of pop hooks.

When it works, it does so with ease. "Take Me Dancing" is the standout track. A musical exploration of the political being personal, it's a highly catchy feminist anthem. It's a politely worded "fuck you" to anyone who believes that gender should stop people having a good time how they choose. It's this combination of pleasant and fierce that make Sløtface such an appealing prospect when they're firing on full cylinders.

When it doesn't quite get there, it's because the pleasant overrides everything else. "Bright Lights" (the opening track on Empire Records, perhaps mistakenly) is all very nice in an early Interpol kind of way. And while there's nothing wrong with it, there's not as much right with it as you find elsewhere on the EP.

Of the other tracks, the eponymous song is a fun nod to the 90s and the classic Generation X movie. "Fever Art" sees the band going a bit more experimental without losing their listen-ability, in a track that brings to mind the brilliance of Wire.

Most of these songs have been released as singles, so existing Sløtface fans may find the EP feels less than essential. For those new to the band however, Empire Records is a great introduction to Sløtface's spiky pop punk.

Release: 18th November 2016, Propeller Records

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