Ouzo! State of Affairs / Balloons 7″

This feels like a decidedly un-punk opinion, but I love an aperitif. Lay out a dainty spread of snacks and offer me a high ABV fancy liqueur, and I’m in heaven. Were I at all musically inclined, I’d consider writing a “Heroin”-like ode to the sensation of slowly sipping something like an ouzo on an empty stomach, the immediate warmth you feel in your gut and the way it gently spreads throughout your body. Nothing gentle about consuming OUZO!, though! This Melbourne four-piece, who’ve been at it for a couple of years now, constructs songs by layering loose, sped-up psych riffs over an extremely tight rhythm section, then smashing that up against what sounds like the UNDERTONES had they chosen to emphasize downstroke punk and bratty glam over pop melodies. The two tracks on this 7″ are immediate and mean and cool and pack quite the wallop. Apparently, the Greeks frown upon going too hard on their most famous spirit with too little to eat, a practice they call going “dry hammer.” Coincidentally, that’s what it feels like OUZO! is smacking you with…in the best possible way. Get some in ya!