Cemetery Vacation is the latest release from the Washington D.C. five piece, Walk The Plank. The band claim they will “leave you feeling supercharged, like when you first learn to ride a bike”. With that kind of attitude, I can’t help but want this to be great before I’ve even listened to it.
The full length album kicks off with Work Fiction and starts the record with fast and brutal punk rock, with some great melodies and riffs thrown in. Pity Party keeps the adrenaline pumping with chugging verses and fast choruses, before dropping in a typical break down, gang chants, and throwing the song back in our faces.
Don’t Believe puts more of a bouncy feel into the record with the guitar work reminding me of bands like Zeke for some reason (only slower): like you’d walk with a purpose with this one playing. Track four Sea Of Scenes comes along and slows the pace a little, and makes use of spoken word vocals in the verse. Although the chorus picks this song back up, I’m glad when the anthemic style intro of Dead Broke fires up. It’s not as fast as the earlier tracks, but this song has some grunt and one of those punk rock grooves that you could almost dance to.
The whole album has an air of fun, while being dirty. The guitars are fuzzy while still having a crunch to them. They play simple punk rock riffs whilst the drummer rolls around the toms and abuses the cymbals. The bass player keeps the sound full, but still throws a few lines in, and the vocals are that typical blend of growling and shouting. It’s all reminiscent of Comeback Kid and Sick Of It All. Nothing in this album is breaking new ground, but it’s solid and its fun.
Dying On The Vine opens with guitar that may well fit into an indie band’s repertoire, but then we are greeted with the rest of the band and the song turns into a song that takes a lot of turns around punk, with slower choruses being thrown in with fast paced verses and a slow and constant middle 8.
Scapegoat doesn’t need much said about it: it’s fast, it’s hardcore punk, and it lasts one minute one second. This also leads us into Emptying My Hea‘, which is the only song on the record over three minutes long. Another song which isn’t overly fast, but makes use of the constant and repetitive rhythm used a few times already. As fun as it is, by this point (and with the track being so lengthy by comparison), it’s starting to feel a little over used. Then all of a sudden Unaware slaps you in the face with a savage intro and drops you into bouncy punk rock.
The album draws to a close with Teachers Pet followed by Summer 2010. The former has a fun pace and some of the best rhythms on the album, while the latter is a sludgy number that doesn’t leave the album ending on a high note.
The recording is exactly how I imagine the songs will sound live, and if these guys were on the stage I’m sure it would be a sweaty and entertaining gig. Fans of hardcore will enjoy this album, but most people who enjoy punk will find something on here they enjoy. This album is growing on me, and overall a decent offering to the punk rock scene.