Thursday, February 10, 2022

Album Review: Yard Act - The Overload

Yard Act
The Overload
**** out of *****

The post-punk scene in England is in robust shape and the debut from Yard Act joins that line of disenfranchised acerbic dance ready rock with The Overload

The Leeds based quartet consisting of James Smith – vocals, Ryan Needham – bass, Sam Shjipstone – guitar, Jay Russell – drums (with extra musicians helping along the way) are confident in their sarcastic, biting assessment of their home country in a post Brexit world. Their thoughts, outrages and revelations are far from original, but some truths need to be reinforced in dark times, like the current situation. 

The band channels recent Parquet Courts and classic Arctic Monkey sounds, going for bouncy dance laden post punk with chatty political lyrics on the album, starting with the the title track opener before "Dead Horse" details the death of the United Kingdom over a dance floor moving bass line. The direct "Payday" urges to take the money and run with some added digital bleeps while the less successful, more repetitive "Rich" adds a a few sax squeaks to the mix.   

The group works with a detached sense of pessimism for the most part but things pull tighter and pumping for "The Incident". The band are hippies at heart and "Pour Another" sums up the Yard Acts 'we all gotta live together' attitude with a catchy as hell slice of pub inspired indie-rock. 

A successful shift in overall tune and lyrical direction is "Tall Poppies", an extended story song that grooves through different judgments and ideas and a tune that elevates itself above the others in doing so. The listener never knows quite where the tale is going until a shift and abrupt change of tone, but one that leads to the overall message of the album, the world is a strange place filled with all sorts, and it takes all sorts to keep it moving, for better or worse. 

The band seems to stumble a bit with the jumbled "Land of the Blind" and the finale "100% Endurance" has a solid message of living fully everyday but limps out musically, but with stout tracks preceding it, the debut from Yard Act, The Overload displays a confident band delivering the goods for their place and time.  
Support the artists, buy the album and peep some video below:

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