REVIEW: Downtown Boys – Full Communism


downtownboys-fullcommunismRhode Island punk band Downtown Boys are described by their label Don Giovanni Records as a “bilingual political sax punk party,” which is a good way of putting it. The energetic band lives up to that label on their debut album, Full Communism.

Full Communism delivers 24 minutes of pure, straight ahead punk laced with frenetic horns and the shouts of lead singer Victoria Ruiz, who flips the vocals back and forth between English and Spanish. You pretty much know what you’re getting right off the bat with the opening track “Wave of History,” a fast-paced dose of, well, political sax punk.

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The album tackles numerous political issues, one of them being racism. Ruiz tackles the issue of feeling the need to prove herself because of the color of her skin on the track “Monstro,” during which Ruiz asks “Why is it that we never have enough with what’s inside of us?” and screams the point home “She’s brown! She’s smart!”

“Monstro” is one of the highlights of the album along with the guitar-laden “Break a Few Eggs,” which seems like a good mission statement for the band. Pure Communism closes on an unexpected note, with a cover of Bruce Springsteen’s “Dancing in the Dark.” It’s a little strange but also somewhat works in its own unique way and serves as proof that underneath the angry politics of Full Communism, Downtown Boys is a group that likes to make sure they add a dash of fun.

Full Communism is definitely something for punk fans to enjoy first and foremost. Depending on your musical tastes, you might find that a little of this goes a long way and that after 24 minutes you’ve had your fill, but the energy of Pure Communism is fun to experience at least once if you’re a rock fan. Full Communism is a solid collection of songs overall and leaves you with the feeling that Downtown Boys is a band that will have plenty more to say in the future.

Release Date: May 5, 2015


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