Warning: You should probably take a deep breath before listening to Screws, the latest EP from London four-piece The Kramers – or at least undertake some sort of mental and physical preparation.
According to the band themselves, after splitting up in 2008 before reforming two years ago “things are a little tamer these days”, which is a scary thought if Screws is anything to go by. From the filthy, grotty intro of ‘Media Eyes’, Screws is a relentless EP of post punk so raucous it’s enough to make even Mark E Smith wince – although they still don’t fail to miss a trick when it comes to a catchy chorus hook.
‘Blue Light’ hints at the band’s American influences in a more obvious manner, while ‘Temples of Bones’ has a flavour of Johnny Rotten in Matt Halford’s vocals to accompany the blistering bass of Simon Barker. ‘Destination Psychosis’ concludes the EP in the heaviest possible manner, with an initial awkwardness (in a good way) reminiscent of The Fall, before the shifting dynamics make it a full-blown rock out.
By the end, it’s impossible not to feel somewhat battered and bruised by a garage rock onslaught from a band who fittingly describe themselves as “rock n roll noise merchants” – and when has that ever been a bad thing?