SINGLE REVIEW: Territories – Quit This City/Defender (Pirates Press Records)

Canadian punks Territories are probably a new name to most people, but they’re certainly a band worth exploring.

Formed in 2015 in Calgary, Alberta, after the reunion of four long-time friends, who used to play together in Knucklehead, they released their self-titled debut album last year.

Their old band dealt in fast-paced yet melodic punk rock, with thought-provoking lyrics, influenced by the likes of Stiff Little Fingers and Bad Religion, and their new one is much the same.

Territories aren’t quite as frantic, but their album was one of the best new things I heard last year, and this 7in (also available as a digital download) is a taste of what’s to come next from the band, who have just played at the Pirates Press 15th anniversary weekend Rock The Ship on board the aircraft carrier USS Hornet.

Both songs here are working class rock ‘n’ roll, packed with hooks, catchy singalong choruses, and plenty of melody. Whether you like classic punk like The Clash or more contemporary bands like The Menzingers, I think you’ll like this.

Quit This City addresses having to make life-changing decisions, urging “let’s do this now, before we get too old”, and has a real feeling of ennui about it, while Defender is a more urgent, upbeat song about standing up for yourself. If this is what to expect from their second album, I’m hooked already.

Pirates Press have also released The Lockdown, a one-sided picture flexi where Territories address the problem of gun violence, particularly in schools. It’s also worth tracking down if you can.

Gary Welford owner