Album review: The Shitty Limits – ‘Beware The Limits’

Album review: The Shitty Limits - 'Beware The Limits'

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Away from their live shows, the Reading DIY punks don't quite take it to the edge

People say punk is some big spiritual attitude, or a grand ethic or a gas or something, but it’s not really. It’s just a racket fired up by

righteousness. Reading garage outfit The Shitty Limits understand this.

There’s something really rather clever going on somewhere within these

20-odd minutes of UK punk but they don’t sound like they care too much

if you work out what it is – it’s much more fun to simply break stuff.


The Shitty Limits have already scared audiences into admiration with spit and snot a-flying to become one of the hottest-tipped bands on the UK DIY scene in a very long time. Wary of conventional press and marketing methods, the secretive quartet go only by initials. They’ve already flatly turned down NME for a Radar interview (we went ahead and gave them the love anyway), have a notable lack of any moody press shots, hell, any press shots at all and they don’t use Twitter. Something tells us these awkward keepers of the faith won’t be attempting a Gallows-sized leap into the mainstream any time soon.


With their early limited singles long-since sold out, they now limber up for a debut full-length that could only be more bedraggled if it was

crack-addicted, wearing a binliner and shouting abuse at students at Camden Tube. But it’s also tremendous fun, channelling everybody from The Germs to The B-52’s.


If the songs are deceptively intelligent, they’re still spat out like Tourette’s episodes and, on ‘Show Me’, whichever one of our no-named

friends is the singer struggles to get the words out, sounding like

a hyena suffering from a nasty scrotal hernia. The ferocious ‘Your Limits Are My Limits’ is their no-fi version of a signature tune.


Things reach critical mass with ‘Television’; a song that perfectly

understands the contradictory truth that sometimes the most profound

messages can be found in the most stoopid boxes. All the usual pop-political concerns about mass-culture propaganda and the ‘dumbing down of discourse’ explode into a simple smart bomb with the sheer screamed intensity of the repeated line “I saw it on the television!”


So much so that by the time the closing title track starts trying to channel the seething rage of the Pixies it actually sounds like a relative breather. But in the end, listening to ‘Beware The Limits’ in a controlled environment rather than in its natural surroundings – a sweaty, shouty gig – leaves you with the slight disappointment of the premature ejaculator: sure, it’s lots of fun, but wouldn’t it be a lot nicer if you got to do all the pushing and shoving as well?

Dan Martin


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Click here to get your copy of The Shitty Limits’ ‘Beware The Limits’ from the Rough Trade shop