Viceprez Tropical Connexion LP
I really liked VICEPREZ’s previous full-length, and this latest is no different. Well, actually, it is a little different. The vocals have a little more bite to them (thanks primarily to centering a different vocalist), and there’s an angular danciness that really suits their no-bullshit garage-y punk. Third track stunner “Love Again” would have been a surprise hit in the ’90s—big crashing drums, snarling vocals, and a big fat hook. The balance of pissed-off energy and melody does have a kind of firm nod to the ’90s in general, but it never sounds dated. There’s even a little bit of HOT SNAKES (a heartfelt RIP to Rick Froberg) afterglow to tracks like “Thru the Cracks,” which nails that band’s particular ability to inspire moshing and pogoing in equal measure—and yes, those are different vibes! Overall, this is a great follow-up to Juger. Nothing has been thrown away outright, but enough has been added to the mix that it’s an exciting evolution without completely having to reinvent from the ground up. Get it in ya.