Dublin four-piece Brass Monkey certainly don’t give away a lot about themselves so the ‘Tape’ EP will have to do the talking for them. Influenced by any number of rockin’ bands, they rush through its five drum-driven songs, each performed with gusto.
Scream leads, its lurching guitar and drum segment emerging from guitar chaos after the shouted “Waaaaaaaaaah!” vocal. It’s a shouty EP. Same Old Story is a bit more melodic; loose, raggedy funk with a rock’n’roll guitar solo. The fast, punk guitar of Trash – “Trash it around/ Bang it around” – pulls back a bit in the chorus to let the solo breathe before rushing back into the coda. Title track Tape is made for the moshpit – a quick mid-song breather shows mercy, then it’s back to the pit before it abruptly ends in a clatter of toms. There’s a Ramones feel to these numbers, and while the singer is economic with the vocal, repetition is order of the day and snare rolls abound.
The title repetition of EP highlight Spaceman holds the song together with a touch of David Johansen in the vocal. Lyrically it’s deceptively simple at first glance, but it’s an inquisitive appeal to the enigmatic, faceless protagonist of the title. The singer’s pleas fall on his uncaring ears; questions remain unanswered…deal with it. There’s a certain ‘that’ll do’ feel to the production on ‘Tape’ where capturing the energy is more important than fine-tuned perfectionism, and it’s all the better for it. Just do what you’re told – trash it around, bang it around.