Punk music has always been one of those genres that I’ve loved since first listen. It goes all the way back to being about 5 or 6 and hearing the Ramones. From that point onward, I was hooked. There was something about the simplicity of the music that hit home but also the honesty. Granted the latter part didn’t really hit till I got older, I could still sense there was something special about this style of music. As time passed I got more and more into punk music from the Sex Pistols and The Clash. Then 1994 happened and punk music exploded yet again with bands like Green Day, The Offspring and Rancid. It was then that I really delved into what punk music was all about. I then discovered bands like Black Flag, Bad Religion, etc. It was then that I realized the “heavier” side of punk music was for me. So over the years I found myself seeking out those bands that fit that style more. Which brings me to a band I heard a few years ago that has always stood out to me.
Back in 2013 there was an album that came out called Home by a band called Off With Their Heads, and there was something about this record that really left a mark. This band had the whole package, from hard hitting riffs and super punchy bass and drums to the honest lyrics and vocal delivery that made it all believable. Home, Off With Theirs Heads’ third full-length (though it could be considered their fourth depending on if you count the Hospitals record as an album), found the group diving deeper into experimentation without compromising their roots. This album is “real” and it’s grit shows through. When you have songs that tackle topics like anxiety, anger, and self loathing, it’s tough not to feel a connection. There is an underlying sense of catharsis to these songs which makes the end result feel very positive and optimistic. Songs like “Start Walking,” “Shirts,” “Nightlife,” “Focus On Your Own Family,” “Don’t Make Me Go,” “Always Alone,”and “Stolen Away” are not only standout songs but, anthems as well.
Singer Ryan Young has a voice that you feel every word he sings. It’s one of those immediate voices that will stay with you and act as a mantra of sorts. Musically, Off With Their Heads hit you like a ton of bricks. There is a real sense of urgency to the way they play and deliver the songs. You can really hear that on Home. Off With Their Heads are the type of band that has much in common with their punk influences but also bands like Jawbreaker and Jawbox. The realness and honesty (there’s that word again) really shines through in this band. That is something that will always have a lasting effect on those that listen and take the words to heart. Do yourselves a favor and take a listen to this unsung masterpiece and, celebrate a true work of art!
Off With Their Heads- Home: