Album Review: The Crunch – “Busy Making Noise”
I was rather impressed with the preview single Down By The Border that this lot put out back in May, and went as far as to put forth a “one to look out for” prediction on this album… and I’m happy to report I was right!
This, the first album from this collaboration of Terry Chimes (The Clash), Dave Tregunna (Sham 69 / Lords Of The New Church), Mick Geggus (Cockney Rejects) and Sulo Karlsson (Diamond Dogs) is an addictively melodic little gem. If we’re honest, with this lineup they could probably have put out any old punk guff and got away with it, but here they’ve gone way beyond that to make a sound that is at once rich and anthemic, but still packing a highly credible punch.
Drawing from a wealth of collective experience, and each bringing their own elements of this to Karlsson’s honest and effortlessly classic rock n roll songwriting, a new beast is created, suited to party anthems and piano-led ballads in equal measures. My personal highlight is probably A Little Bit Of Grace, which sees Karlsson duetting with female vocalist and long term collaborator Idde Schultz. Opening with unashamedly poppy do-do-do-do’s, Schultz’s sweetness counterpoints Karlsson’s gravelly tones perfectly, with hard chugging riffs underscoring a bittersweet breakup tale. It’s not a new trick, but The Crunch have done it just right.
My original reference points of Social Distortion, the sunnier end of Rancid and 77 punk still remain, but I will also add a bit of Ramones circa Rock N Roll Radio, plus a certain something else that I just can’t quite place. I could drive myself mad trying to pick it out, but sod it, I’ll let you lot work that one out – I’m just going to sit back and enjoy it.