Pack Rat


Pack Rat Bite My Tongue EP

I’m sure most punks can remember the genesis of their obsession with the genre; mine was a compilation I got one teenage Christmas featuring the likes of the SAINTS, EDDIE AND THE HOT RODS, and the JAM, amongst others. It defined my taste in music, and here, two decades later, I’m pleased as can be to be writing about Bite My Tongue, an EP from PACK RAT that essentially throws every band on that comp into a blender, resulting in four tracks of bouncy, power-poppy rippers with great hooks and pop sensibility, inspired by the less abrasive, more melodically driven side of ’70s punk. Opening title track “Bite My Tongue” features frontman Patrick McEachnie’s stuttering vocals and reverb-soaked guitar strutting their way through the song before reaching a DAMNED-worthy chorus. “New Kind (Of Love)” sounds like a lost RUDI or UNDERTONES cut with a surf-y lead, and “Parasite City” wraps up with a guitar line that would make Steve Diggle of BUZZCOCKS proud. Closing track “Sleepless,” sung by guitarist Bella, takes a heap of REZILLOS, a dash of X, and a sprinkle of SCIENTISTS to create a sugary sweet power-pop-punk confection. Bite My Tongue is an excellent EP that is a treat for the old-heads and is sure to turn some young punks on to the scene. Highly recommended!

Pack Rat Glad to Be Forgotten LP

There’s something so perfect about the prolonged keyboard drones throughout this record. They go on for so long, hitting an ear-aching interval, that I honestly wondered at first if something was wrong with my headphones. That’s top-tier brattiness, and it serves each and every track on this synth punk classic. PACK RAT is the brainchild of CHAIN WHIP and CORNER BOYS drummer Patrick McEachnie, who wrote and performed the whole affair. On songs like “Next Time Hit Me,” McEachnie strikes a balance between the DAMNED (first record only) and something almost more akin to the boom of early 2000s bratty keyboard pop like ATOM AND HIS PACKAGE (except way better) or something cooler like the SPITS at their most android-rock. Drawing those comparisons only scratches the surface, really. What you get here is solid songwriting that sounds beautifully pissed-off and will always catch you off-guard. “I never was a virgin, I was fucked from the start” sings McEachnie on “Blame It on Me,” which really sums up the overall world view manifested in soundwaves. Top-notch prankster punk, if your idea of a good prank is blowing up someone’s toilet.