Punk: Year in Review 2010
Published Nov 28, 20101. White Lung
2. Burning Love
3. Ted Leo and the Pharmacists
4. The Flatliners
5. Crime in Stereo
7. Nü Sensae
8. The Menzingers
9. Hostage Calm
10. Bomb the Music Industry!
1. White Lung It's the Evil (Deranged)
White Lung only released their debut It's the Evil this summer, but those with an ear tipped toward the Vancouver underground have been watching since 2006, when a couple of burning-hot vinyl singles threw the visceral punk quartet into critics' and fans arms, as well as deeper into a series of personal hindrances. Vocalist Mish Way says stopping wasn't an option and that the stop/start momentum stoked them further. "We [including drummer Anne-Marie Vassiliou and bassist Grady Mackintosh] made a decision after Natasha [Reich, guitarist] left that we were going to keep this band together. We've all worked hard, fuck it. So we kept planning all the time. Always thinking." They soon found guitarist Kenny McCorkell, recorded another stellar seven-inch, toured, and finally readied their debut.
"Kenny did an amazing job. He came in and we were like, 'well, shit. We have to write. Let's do this.' It was crazy, but it worked. Every single day we were practicing, and writing and scrambling. I'm pretty proud of how it went." That drive lurches off of It's the Evil. It's easy to throw labels at the stark, messy ferocity, but none of them really stick: post-punk, riot-grrrl, garage. What the taut mania boils down to is sensation ― heart and guts, transcending musical trends and politics. "It isn't a female energy, it isn't a masculine energy. It's something else that isn't gendered," says Way, the group's true nucleus, herself a modern, transfixing Iggy Pop/Patti Smith hybrid.
It's the Evil is a watershed that might even cement White Lung as ambassadors for a Canadian scene that's still writing its history. "In Vancouver, right now, there are so many great bands putting out incredible records. You get inspired. That's how music scenes have always been. It's a community."