Review Summary: Fresh young fun punk energy, big ups!
Big Ups is a young punk band from New York City. Their first album, Eighteen hours of static, has been released in early 2014 and has been followed by the sophomore effort "Before a million universes" in March 2016.
Eighteen hours of static is rather short, clocking at 28 minutes. Overall, what impresses the most is the fresh raw energy of the record, that never bores the listener at any point. The kids are angry and are dying to play catchy riffs whilst screaming their anti-everything messages in your face. They let you know their bellicose intentions immediately with the intro " Fresh meat", which sets the mood for the rest of the LP. The lyrics of the albums are very direct and, while definitely not employing complex metaphores, each song expresses a different message. All considered, this simplicity is one of the strenghts of the album. If Big Ups think that we dispose of objects and people without any sort of care, they tell you that without finesseries, even making you dance to that. In "Justice", Big Ups tell "Everybody says it's getting better all the time. But it's bad, still bad", before saying they would be asking for justice, if they were granted only one wish. The effect they obtain with this approach is that listening to eighteen hours makes it very hard for you to manage to stand still, because you would like to be at a concert pushing people around.
The influences within the record are more than clear. The band worships the good post-hardcore following a Fugazi style, but the album goes full hardcore at times with relentless drumming. At the same time, on other songs the band leans convincingly on more intimate atmospheres that could be part of a Slint album, in songs such as "Wool". The positive energy of the music can remind of bands like At the drive in or noMeansno.
On a negative note, it is clear that the band has still not achieved full maturity, and the rage is dragged by adolescent emotions. Perhaps not everyone could relate to the tone of the album. Furthermore, many songs are quite similar, but since the LP is rather short this flaw gets away almost unnoticed. Overall, eighteen hours is a great lot of fun, and I would recommend it to any punk fan. Big Ups is a talented band, and has the potential to bring good things in the future of punk.