Rising from the ashes of punk’s sad downturn in recent years, The Decline reissue their second venture ‘Are You Gonna Eat That?’ to a scene in desperate need of such a rapturous shake-up.
Under a title freshly plucked from a Mean Girls-esque sophomore comedy and showcasing artwork more controversial than that Guns ‘N’ Roses album, The Decline’s second album is given a revival worthy of the five years since it hit shelves. After ten years together and last year’s astounding performance on ‘Resister’, ‘Are You Gonna Eat That?’ re-emerges as a not-so-subtle reminder of punk’s core values.
Through the miracle of hindsight, ‘Crash Course in Emotional English’ presents the triumphant return of unbridled chaos in punk, with only its melodic vocal twangs to suggest that this is a present day punk effort. If you struggle to keep up with the toe-tapping pace of ‘Human Exports’ and ‘The Financial Equivalent of a Complete Rectal Exam’, that shows the genre severely needs a heart-racing bypass at the hands of this Perth outfit.
With your punk album stereotypes checklist at the ready, tick off the compulsory sentimental acoustic – ‘2006’ brings proceedings back down to earth with a tear-stained bump. Then there’s the vivid disdain amidst impressively catchy riffs – ‘Shower Time in the Slammer’ fills in this formula with a quirky Australian twist. The necessary homesickness bursts through ‘66b’, which leaves only the inevitably hilarious joker card – leave your logs for The Decline to inspect, as ‘$hit Yeah’ helpfully instructs.
Skate punk was forged to be enjoyed both solo and with incredible company, as ‘Excuse Me’ arrives jam-packed with cohesive melodies and a sense that The Decline are not a dismissive outfit by any means. True to type, ‘Worlds Apart II’ and ‘Rooftops’ proffer a stark realism that punk of late has left by the wayside, heralded by the latter’s final lingering line – “I will still be here after he’s gone.”
‘Are You Gonna Eat That?’ has made a timely return, just when the system requires a sharp defibrillation.
Pat Decline – guitar and vocals
Ben Elliott – guitar and vocals
Ray Ray – bass
Harry – drums
‘Are You Gonna Eat That?’ track listing:
Crash Course in Emotional English
Shower Time in the Slammer
You Call This a Happy Meal?
Worlds Apart II
The Financial Equivalent of a Complete Rectal Exam