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Album review: Red Kate/The Bad Ideas split 7" record





Album review: Red Kate/The Bad Ideas split 7" record

(Photo by Todd Zimmer)
 
The sound of rock ‘n roll, serious dyed in the wool; real rock ‘n roll blasting through my speakers rejuvenates my tattered and weary soul. I’ve grown tired of the indie/college rock/shoegaze types; to me, music (rock especially) should be like sex: I’ll take a quick five-minute explosion of passion and true power over an hour of half-hearted posturing mediocrity any day.
 
The upcoming split single from KC bands Red Kate (pictured above) and The Bad Ideas, being released by Mills Record Company, is anything but a boring rock roll in the hay; it is rock ‘n roll laid out by two bands that clearly know how it is done.
 
Red Kate, the pinko commies from the Heartland whose sound is equal parts The Clash, The Saints, and Chuck Berry, continually put out music that is catchy, thought-provoking and top shelf. Its two offerings to the 7” are no exception. They are exactly what you would expect from Shawn and Company: fast and as invigorating as Bruce Lee kicking you straight into an ice-covered lake.
 
“On My Mind” is good ol’ sing-along punk rock. Red Kate gets to the point and breaks down the key ingredient of what makes music so addictive, how you should be as a player, someone that people will always follow: “Keep moving forward / leave them wanting more.” Rock steady drum, silky smooth bass, flamethrower guitar, and a run time of just over two minutes is a recipe for success in this ADHD world.
 
“I got new dreams and I’m gonna make ‘em real” is the fuse that light’s “New Dreams.” Repeating that line over and over as the band plays at breakneck speed, “New Dreams” molds itself into a mantra that becomes part of your brain, making you believe that these guys truly know what they want and where they’re going, and you buy what they’re selling. Red Kate clearly knows what it wants, has its convictions, and is willing to put it all out there. Lucky for us, the group is willing to lay it down on wax too. Editor’s note: “New Dreams” is originally a Naked Raygun song, written by Santiago Durango.
 
Since first hearing Patti Smith first belt out “Piss Factory,” Ann Wilson blowing my doors off with “Barracuda,” Kathleen Hanna singing about a “Rebel Girl,” or PJ Harvey saying she’s “Man Size,” I’ve thought women fronting bands—punk rock bands especially—is incredible and hot. Sure, that statement will probably get me shit for being chauvinist or whatever but I don’t care. A woman laying it all out there is amazing. Breaka Dawn of The Bad Ideas certainly will continue my fascination with frontwomen. The Bad Ideas’ contributions “Apocalypse Detroit” and “I’m Stuck” show that, like their partners in crime, they speak what they believe. They don’t play pretend when they play punk rock, they ARE punk rock.
 
The drums, guitar, and bass are as wild, hectic, and ramshackle as the subject matter. It’s two minutes and six seconds of chaos and anarchy. Quality punk rock visiting time-tested themes of punk: a system collapsing upon itself, choosing what side to be on, standing up for yourself, it’s all there and it’s done well.
 
“I’m Stuck,” the other is a California hardcore at its finest. It’s fast, disaffected, and bitches about the way people are treated in America. In short, it’s about being stuck in a rut dug by society. I’m sure we’ve all been there once or twice.
 
This split 7” shows that, even in America’s Heartland, people can be pissed, disillusioned, bored, and generally defeated by life. The key is to turn that into gnashing of teeth and let it boil over into creativity. These bands have certainly done that.
 
--Danny R. Phillips
 
Danny has been reporting on music of all types and covering the St. Joseph music scene for well over a decade. He is a regular contributor to the nationally circulated BLURT Magazine and his work has appeared in The Pitch, The Omaha Reader, Missouri Life, The Regular Joe, Skyscraper Magazine, Popshifter, Hybrid Magazine, the websites Vocals on Top and Tuning Fork TV, Perfect Sound Forever, The Fader, and many others.
 
 
Join Red Kate and The Bad Ideas at the album release party this Saturday at Harling’s. Faultfinder, Bruiser Queen (St. Louis), and Crushed Out (Brooklyn) will also play. Starts at 8 p.m. Facebook event page.

 

 

 

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