Gay Black Republican
You should never fuck with consistency, that is if it is in your favor. One of the more consistent bands in the Midwest add to their punk resume with USA L.L.C. It has been years since Gay Black Republican released a collection of new material. In our current political and social climate, their sound to the siren breathes refreshing relevance.
It was a no brainer that GBR was invited to perform on the some of the Dead Kennedy dates last year. Tackling politics, the working class, economics, and class analysis, they nestle comfortably into the Californian-style punk ideology. Dredge in some sarcasm and what you have is an all-around great punk rock romp.
The band goes for the jugular right at the gate with “Political Fuckery.” You can imagine the hot sauce that is spread around Doc Gremore’s venomous lyrics. The call and response is meaningful Murphy’s Law-like militia that dishes up a heavy dose of reality. “Turn on the news turn off your brain.” Awareness does not feel so ideal anymore.
But then we take a hard left and experience a song about, well, time signatures. Rich Barker’s chunky bass leads to an irritable disclaimer. “For a Fucking Four” goes against the four-four time signature. But it also branches out into the mundane attitude that mimics popular culture.
“Working To Be Poor” is the standout on the album. Jeff Spalding’s pseudo-ska strums blend with the fallacies Gremore and the guys expose of the working class. A song that is more observational than reactionary, the irony goes beyond blue collar. “Can’t take no more. Work to be poor.”
Gay Black Republican – Working to Be Poor Music Video
What else is there to do? Write a drinking song called “One More Drink.” It’s a minute thirty of three-chord fury. The quick binge is as much a bar brawl as it is a pint raiser.
One of my favorites on the album is “Green Light.” Vic Cardoza is a beast on the drums and its delusional effect is intoxicating. This is punk rock for obvious intentions as the out of control steam train spins into weird off-kilter stop/start power chords all wrapped in a middle finger. The song jump starts back into a psychological rant over traffic lights.
I love this album as much as I love their self-titled album and Capital Wave. USA L.L.C. reminds us that bare-bones punk rock is all you need to push creativity and express obvious concerns about how we see daily life, even if those concerns end up being full of honest sarcasm.