Muncie Girls
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Muncie Girls

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"Album Review: Muncie Girls - Revolution Summer 4/5"

As the end of summer 2012 draws to a close and the brisk cold weather patterns of fall and winter are on the horizon, a strew of new music helps to soundtrack such a change and look towards the second half of the year. Exeter melodic punk trio Muncie Girls have managed to write a collection of five songs to accompany such a change, providing a record that is both reflective of what has happened and to look forward and stand strong for what may happen, concepts of which are reinforced by the hookiest and passionate of punk rock melodies.

Musically the band takes a huge influence from a lot of late 80s and early 90s alt rock band with punk spirit and soul embedded; great lyrics and hooky melodies displayed in such songs including ‘Kasper and Randow’ will no doubt have you dancing in your room shouting the words with the utmost glee. ‘Bum Chicago’ is a prime example of the hidden gritty angst filled vibes which are cloaked by the rather melancholic and self-reflective personal nature of the lyrics, this helps give a real spark to the dynamic of the songs themselves.


In regards to the lyrics, the themes that are covered will no doubt grab anyone who right now is in their late teens to early twenties who are facing the likes of troubled relationships and hesistant futures, issues that will cling on to the constant cycle of the generations. This is a record that says, “Hey, I know how you are feeling but I’ve got a feeling that everything will be fine if we do try and take a reluctant step.” ‘Feel It Soon’ and ‘Railroad’ are definitely the anthems of this generation and generations to come who might need some guidance and a tool of artistry to help put the pieces of their issues together in a coherent organised to do list so they can tackle them bit by bit, piece by piece.

In summary, ‘Revolution Summer’ is a fantastic and promising record from a band that is still in their early days. It ticks all the right boxes in being a collector’s item for any music lover. The only criticism would be that it’s too short which also helps it to achieve an added quality of leaving you hungry for whatever new material the band will pen down and jam to in the nearest venue. Muncie Girls are a band that have me and will have you under hook, line, and sinker.

4/5
- Already Heard


"Muncie Girls [Cassette] (2011) 4.5 Stars"

Earlier this week I had the pleasure of seeing Exeter's Muncie Girls for the second time this year. Once again they had a stand-in drummer, although a different one to the first time I saw them and this EP features a third person on drums from what I can gather. I'm not sure what is going on with the band and who is the "normal" drummer, but whoever seems to take the seat, they manage to provide a marvelous accompaniment to Lande Hekt on bass and vocals and Dean McMullen on guitar and vocals.

Opening track "Phantom Limb" is one of those songs that make you fall in love with a band the first time you hear it. I'd already played it on Bandcamp before buying the CD version that the band sells at shows (I believe the cassette is sold out now but these tracks can be bought via Bandcamp) so was fully aware of its catchiness with Hekt's beautiful voice over an almost Samiam sounding tune but live it had an even bigger impact on me. The Samiam comparison is one which I frequently hear when listening to Muncie Girls, although it's not an in-your-face thing; it's much more subtle than that. When Hekt sings, it's impossible to ignore her voice as it has a wonderful quality that draws you in, showing a hint of vulnerability yet with a touch of self belief as well. The other thing this song has is those couple of lines that get stuck in your head and keep the track going round and round without it ever getting boring or overplayed. Those lines are:

"Sometimes I'd feel a body next to me, like an amputee feels a phantom limb.
My loneliness was completely self inflicted, and I wouldn't let anybody in."

For me they are extremely evocative and it'll be a long time before I get tired of hearing this song.

To follow this comes "While You Live Yours," another storming song which features some great guitar work and equally good bass playing (seeing Hekt play and sing live is a real treat--her fingers move at a ferocious pace at times and how anyone manages to sing so well at the same time is beyond me). This is a more uptempo song and the vocals of Hekt and McMullen work well together in the chorus, providing yet another glorious two minutes and 42 seconds of music.

The final track is a big departure from the first two as it is an acoustic effort which again highlights the quality of Hekt's voice, showing its versatility in a different musical setting.

It might sound as if this is quite a sycophantic review but this band is really good live and in these three songs they've produced a fantastic release that I cannot get enough of. I really can't wait for more recordings from this band and to be able to see them live again. If you like Great Cynics, then give Muncie Girls a try--they're even better in my opinion. - Punknews


"Muncie Girls - Revolution Summer [12-inch] 5 Stars"

My first encounter with Muncie Girls came earlier this year and since then, well I've been rather smitten with the band. In fact, they're the band I've seen the most this year which is an honor (albeit a dubious one) that usually goes to Crazy Arm, and they've not failed once to get my head nodding and feet tapping.

Anyways, here are five new tracks that basically prove that Muncie Girls are currently on top of the pile in the U.K. in terms of writing and performing the perfect catchy pop-punk song. Once again Lande Hekt's vocal and bass performance is flawless as her warm tones deliver some great lyrics whilst her fingers work wonders with the four strings at her disposal. Alongside her, Dean McMullen provides intricacy and thunderous chords aplenty with his six allotted strings, and adds a handful of riffs that will become permanent inhabitants of your head. Behind this duo is Luke Ellis, who provides a snappy and complete performance on drums.

Opening with "Feel It Soon," which features one of McMullen's tasty riffs, I start to believe I've stumbled upon the best song of the year and it quickly becomes one of those tracks that eases its way into your life, never to leave. That's it then; a great song and now I'm ready for four good songs that come close but don't reach the same heights. Next is "Kasper and Randow" and what becomes blatantly apparent is that Muncie Girls are not content with opening with the best song in their arsenal; they also want a second great song on the record. This one provides more sing-along choruses that seem effortless as they grab hold of your tonsils to join in singing along with. Okay, I can deal with that-two great songs in a row, bands do that sort of thing now and again. Bring on track three, "Bum Chicago."

Hmmm, it would seem that the gifted Muncies are intent on starting off with quality but not only do they keep raising the bar for subsequent efforts, they keep exceeding it too. "Bum Chicago" has a bit more pace to it and here Hekt's basslines drive the track along exquisitely. However, without the input of McMullen and Ellis, this could not be the song it is-in fact across the five songs all three members of the band play such an important part that it's easy to spot the synergy that is created by the Exeter-based trio in what they do.

Up fourth is the title track and if you think the excellence would finally take a break, or drop, then you're wrong. Maybe it's not the incremental step up that has been evident up to now but it's still a hugely impressive song nonetheless and once again Hekt, McMullen and Ellis come up with the goods.

"Railroad" is the song that brings the EP to a close and here I am left stunned at what I hear. This is probably the song of the year for me: opening with Lande's voice and bass, before the band kicks in for what is the song that is spinning in my head from the opening of my eyes on a daily basis since I first heard it. I kid you not, this song is from the top drawer-better than anything else on this record (and that's not easy to achieve) and better than "Phantom Limb" off the band's first EP, which is another marvelous Muncie's track.

It would be easy to give this 4.5 stars and say that it's not quite there as a classic but that would be denying Revolution Summer the plaudits it fully deserves and also not acknowledging what I truly think of it: this is one of the best EPs I've heard in more years than I can remember and it should be acknowledged now for the timelessness it exhibits. All five songs are of the highest quality, delivering on every level and it seems to be done with an ease that permeates the band when seen live, something that makes me appreciate them even more. If you only buy one record this year then this is the one it should be. - Punknews


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