Notes From The Underground – Free Above Them MP3

I was planning to leave it until nearer October before writing about this band, but after seeing them a handful of times in the last two weeks, I think I might self-combust if I hold it in any longer. Timid yet raucously melodic, fully charged post-hardcore with the momentum of a freight train, and yet another English band of brothers on the bill for Fest 8. Above Them are coming out swinging, northern accents an’ all. Mint, mate.

Hitting the yellow lines around their town of Pontefract, Yorkshire in their stickered-up plasterer’s van most weekends to tear the balls off anyone that’s in the right place at the right time, AT snuggle in at the No Idea end of things; no frills, big-hearted and more than a bit Small Brown Bike-y.

Okay, the cynics among us would say it’s not exactly breaking musical boundaries and searching where no guitar nor throat has searched before, but the point is this: they’re doing it really bloody well.

Shermer? Dead.
Circus Act? (Fucking) dead.
Chillerton? OK, if you’ve never heard ‘Bleak Unison’ then you are missing out, but don’t they live at the other ends of the country from each other, consequently hardly ever playing live?

Initial parallels to Hot Water Music are undeniable – dirty bass-driven and very straightforward yet anything but dull; riffy, introspective and streetwise, AT can be both a careful breath of fresh air and a sledgehammer-like swing.

With an array of demos, EPs and splits recorded over the past couple of years, a full-length has finally been recorded. ‘Blueprint For A Better Time’, 11 tracks of ’90s punk rock goodness, is set for release later on in the year. Check out the video for the killer single ‘For Those Who Paved The Way’ from the LP here.

How it’s so they’ve toured the US (including playing at The Fest 6 back in 2007) yet they’ve yet to cause a whirlwind stir in Southern UK punk rock scenes somewhat baffles me. I’ll be the first to bet on the full-length amending that.

Download Above Them‘s ‘Where Did All The Hope Go?’ here