The Crash Mats – ’69 Peruvian Panpipe Classics’.

The Crash Mats – Oldham, England, United Kingdom.

For our previous work on the band – Click Here.

The Crash Mats are from Oldham and they play Ska-infused Punk. The band also don’t take themselves seriously, at all in fact. Strong English Punk-Rock merges with old-school Ska, Hardcore Punk and general abandon on this second album. The Crash Mats have taken the oddities from their first record, multiplied them by 69 (again) and somehow managed end up with eighteen quick-fire tracks and three “secret, secreter, secretest” tracks I am not allowed to utter a word on. I was never any good at Maths…

The first two tracks are actually somewhat out of character for the The Crash Mats. ‘Hot Air Balloon Ride’ flirts with raspy 90’s Bouncing Souls-esque pogo-Punk, while ‘Drive Me To Drink’ is 0:46 of unashamed Punk-Rock n’ Roll and it’s fantastic. The more melodic vocals of ‘I Don’t Grandma’s House Tonight’ hammer the all important serious point home. The Crash Mats really don’t want to watch QVC on a Friday night and that Rock n’ Roll guitar tone and Ramones/Teenage Bottlerocket pop-sensibilities are as on point as they can be.

‘Oldham’s National Anthem’ and its intro tease old-school Hardcore Punk and that is very much musically what you get, except it isn’t some angsty rant, rather the most English and within that – “northern” song you have ever heard. My minority northern blood has found its anthem and battle-cry.

In all seriousness The Crash Mats are certainly something. The band even at this stage in the album are nothing but impressive. It is true that they are picking from one cherry tree but it doesn’t matter as much as you’d think. They take the repetition of this older-facet of Punk-Rock and make their own, have fun doing it and still manage to give some (barely) serious advice simultaneously in ‘Don’t Go Down Yorkshire Street On A Friday Night’.

The harder Garage Rock/Punk angle the band have taken is refreshing and engaging but by track seven I was yearning for what they do best. ‘Watchmen’ breaks the chain completely in favour of playful Ska/Dub akin to Madness if they were slightly more “nerd” inclined and is actually one of the best on the album.

It is needless to say that if Operation Ivy, early Green Day and Rancid tickle your fancy then the messy classic early 90’s Punk-revivalist riffs will get you going. ‘Don’t Tell Mum The Babysitters Dead’ brings back the Hardcore but leaves you with your head in your hands at how the band can execute a solid Hardcore song and have you in stitches simultaneously.

69 Peruvian Panpipe Classics is a comparatively heavier album. The Crash Mats quite notably never flew too close to the entertaining but overkill Ska-Punk of the likes of Less Than Jake and Reel Big Fish but with this album they have favoured their harder roots.

Again, by the time os ‘Let’s Go and Get Stoned’ by any normal standard you would start to feel the pangs of boredom but with this second album, you don’t. Although arguably slightly longer than it needs to be, the track length on average is so short that you don’t have time to get bored. 69 Peruvian Panpipe Classics very much has the same appeal as Let’s Go or Energy in that it seemingly doesn’t stop for you are too immersed.

‘Party At Lou’s Place’ emanates the convulsion inducing Ska flutters in another album highlight that also brings the albums biggest criticism, it’s lack there of. 69 Peruvian Panpipe Classics is on newer and refreshing ground but its tribute to it roots is sorely missed at times.

‘The Farce’ (officially) closes an album with Punk-Rock and trumpets before three secret tracks that I can only really comment on briefly in that they are well worth the wait.

The second album from The Crash Mats is long, it’s old-school, it’s refreshing and it just might be one of the best Punk releases on the underground circuit this year and is due for release on September 15th 2017 via Horn & Hoof Records.

Find the band and their label below:


Matthew Speer

Matt has 2.1 BA in History and is most likely somewhere in his twenties. He enjoys a wide range of music, but has a strong penchant for Punk-Rock. Originally he hails from the Isle Of Wight off the South Coast of England, UK and spends most of his time around England's South-West.

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