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  Great St Louis - Forever Now
By Hot Cuss Review (March 2007) submitted

Every now and then I´ll feel like I am drifting away from punk music, that none of it interests me anymore, and that I might as well resign myself to the fact that every punk band I really love put out their best records in the last century. Then, inevitably, I´ll hear a new band that puts all those fears to rest and makes me feel like an excited teenager just discovering music all over again. Bolton-based The Great St Louis are, for the moment, that band. Opening track ´No Change´ is a good indicator of what to expect, which is this: melodic punk rock in the vein of Leatherface, but perhaps with the rougher edges sanded down a tad. Not that this is slick, overproduced mush, or indeed like a slick, overproduced Mush (that was a good pun, wasn´t it?), it´s just that The Great St Louis´ take on punk is a bit catchier, has a few more ´whoa-oh´s and ´na-na-nahs´ and an ever-so-slightly less gruff vocal style than the Boat, with singer John sounding as if he only smokes 400 fags a day to Frankie Stubbs´ 1000. Not that this is Leatherface lite, (Plasticface?), mind you - tracks like ´Tonight´ (do check out the video on YouTube), the almost-perfect pop-punk ´Summer´, the sounds-a-bit-like-Snuff singalong of ´Sink´ and set-closer ´Nah Nah Nah´ (guess how that one goes!) prove that this isn´t a band just ripping off established punk bands, but a band capable of writing some of the finest, most hook-stuffed punk songs you´re likely to hear. It´s almost hard to believe that this is their debut album, as there are many bands playing this sort of thing who don´t achieve these heights in their entire lifetime. The only minor disappointment is in their cover of the Levellers´ ´Robbie Jones´ - it´s not that it´s bad, but it certainly screams ´B-side´, and makes more sense when they play it live than it does in the middle of an album. But that literally is the only ´flaw´ with the album - that one of the tracks is merely ´quite good´, while the rest are nigh-on unbeatable. I´m trying not to be too hyperbolic about this record, but if there is a better album by a UK punk band this year - nay, this decade - I´ll be very, very surprised indeed. The Great St Louis? The Fucking Amazing St Louis, more like.

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