It took a calendar on the C-room circuit and a string of limited releases before The Men’s confrontational punk got the attention it deserved. Admittedly, with Fucked Up’s superb meta-opera LP and Danish teen prodigals Iceage’s debut, 2011 was a competitive time for any band vying for the critics’ “saviours of punk” mantle – but many end-of-year plaudits ended rightly with The Men.
The fact that three of the Brooklyn quartet – and yes, they’re all male – share songwriting responsibilities allows the band to draw from a wide range of influences. Like some graphic meltdown of a record store clerk’s own collection, The Men’s “bash-your-head-in” sophomore LP Leave Home veered between destructive post-hardcore, doomy breakdowns, shoegazey post-punk and relentless krautrock rhythms. This March’s Open Your Heart is a more classically structured and anthemic affair – equally recalling Tom Petty or The Replacements as it does Fugazi – and looks set to break the band far beyond their DIY roots.
Add to your festival schedule.