New Jacobin Club Wicked City

Fiery and imposing while still retaining a degree of intelligence and fore-thought, Wicked City is an impressive piece of punk-influenced metal from Canadian prairie metallers New Jacobin Club. Falling just short of classic thrash metal, these well-produced songs are speedy without hitting overbearing and feature a primal vocal delivery that is as forthright as it is catchy. Things become truly interesting, however, when the band hit the chorus of any given song, where their obvious penchant for bubblegum punk rock comes out. The catchy crescendos are shocking polar opposites to the raging verses and the four-chord passages are simple and poppy, creating an almost staccato jump between parts that is moderately jarring yet by the second time around, one finds the elements adhering quite readily. Overall, while Wicked City won’t exactly forge a new stream out of the sea of metal, it is still a refreshing dip. Factoring in the band’s seemingly tongue-in-cheek use of Viking imagery, this displays strong degrees of both a sense of humour and proficiency. (Somnambulist Sound System)