Exeter trio Muncie Girls have seemingly emerged as ones to watch in 2016 by a host of publications. However having released a trio of EPs, two of which were well-received on this very site, it looks like many are latching on to the punk rock goodness Muncie Girls have to offer.
Debut full-length ‘From Caplan to Belsize’ neatly sits itself alongside the band’s former socially aware output as well next to fellow Specialist Subject bands Great Cynics and Bangers. Throughout its lyrics are rooted in vocalist/bassist Lande Hekt’s youthful, coming-of-age tales of adolescence and anxiety.
It is the type of record that grows with each listen. At its core is a straightforward honesty that is delivered both musically and lyrically. As a unit, Muncie Girls show cohesion through the tight rhythm section pairing of Hekt and drummer Luke Ellis, whereas guitarist Dean McMullen consistently provides stringent and suitable chord progression; see the lightweight ‘Social Side’ and closing track ‘No Recording’.
When paired up with the delicately treated and varied lyrical subjects (sexism, healthcare, self-doubt), the trio flourish. Songs such as ‘Respect’, ‘Learn In School’ and ‘Gone With The Wind’ provide an engaging and relatable commentary, whereas ‘Balloon’ and ’No Recording’ are driven by a positive sense of defiance.
Throughout they refuse to over-complicate matters, with ‘Gas Mark 4’ capturing what Muncie Girls‘I Don’t Want To Talk About It’ and ‘Committee’ prove to be equally melodic and punchy with the former coming off as playful with its “oh oh”s, subtly sticking to the band’s punk roots.
Ultimately, the balance of straightforward and alluring lyrics matched with the band’s buoyant and plucky style of punk allows you to be welcomed by the trio with open arms. Muncie Girls are quickly setting the standard of being one of the UK’s most dependable bands. ‘From Caplan to Belsize’ is a gratifying listen from start to finish.
‘From Caplan to Belsize’ by Muncie Girls is out now on Specialist Subject Records.
Words by Sêan Reid (@SeanReid86)