Not Half Bad
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Not Half Bad

Fort Worth, Texas, United States | SELF

Fort Worth, Texas, United States | SELF
Band Folk Punk

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"No Thanks EP Review"

This Texas trio recently managed to catch my attention after hearing the first song off of their "No Thanks" E.P. The strong opening that is "Newports" packs a punch that immediately coaxes you into listening to the next song. The same can be said of the second track, "Public Transit." This pattern continues until the album ends and before you know it, you have the record on repeat while you're sing along. Having been a band for less than a year upon the release of this E.P. doesn't manage to slow these guys down in the slightest. And when listening them you won't be able to guess that they haven't been around as long as some of their folk-punk counterparts.

Their sound is very tightly knit and draws from groups like Mischief Brew, Defiance Ohio, and the early work of Against Me! Although their primary influences may be clear, Not Half Bad is a group that seems to enjoy taking a bit of paint from every palette, both inside and outside of punk. That is of course, if you pay attention. If you do, you might just hear a bit of Chicago style punk pulled into the mix along side some sounds reminiscent of artists like Bob Dylan and CCR. They manage to balance these influences in such a way that there isn't a single one of them that the listener could point to and accuse NHB of "ripping off." This is a skill that many well known punk acts can not claim to have these days, and it is something that will instantly draw in any experienced listener.

Having been doing this for much too long myself, I find most new punk artists boring and cliche. I can't count how many demos I've been handed with the title "F**k You!" with songs like, "We Hate School" and "Parents Stink" (subtitled, "My Mom Called Me in Sick" and "I Have Daddy Issues," respectively of course). Putting all sarcasm aside, "No Thanks" avoids the typical beating of the dead horse that most first releases celebrate. The lyrics are carefully crafted and deal with the frustrations of the constantly progressing individual, as opposed to those of an angry teenager. Which to me, is enough to make each song enjoyable on its own. However, the lyrics continue to better with a sometimes dark sense of humor and an angry (but well-read) voice. Package all of that with a range of drumming styles, a dirty grinding bass, roaring guitar, great production and well placed samples and you have Not Half Bad; a group that has a lot of potential if they keep their noses to the grind. Hopefully they will too, because there is still plenty left for them to accomplish.

. - Paul Hansen


Discography

No Thanks EP

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"[Not Half Bad's] sound is very tightly knit and draws from groups like Mischief Brew, Defiance Ohio, and the early work of Against Me! Although their primary influences may be clear, Not Half Bad is a group that seems to enjoy taking a bit of paint from every palette, both inside and outside of punk.