Young Manchester punk band Aerial Salad have released a new single – and revealed the release date for their much-anticipated second album.
The trio burst onto the scene three years ago with their excellent debut album Roach, which made it onto many critics’ end of year ‘best of’ lists. It also helped them get on tours with the likes of Beach Slang and Wonk Unit, and bills at Rebellion Festival (twice), Manchester Punk Festival and Wonk Fest.
Now, after being taken under the wing of DIY punk mainman Alex Johnson (Wonk Unit, ex-Flying Medallions), they are set to release the eagerly-awaited follow-up.
Dirt Mall will be released on March 27 via Roach Industries/Plasterer, and is preceded by a new single, Romance. Aerial Salad will also tour the UK in April to support the release.
Aerial Salad started as a dream, which turned into a nightmare. The band was conceived by frontman and guitarist Jamie Munro after he’d attended legendary punk event The FEST in Gainesville, Florida, in 2016. The young Manchester Uni student was so inspired and impressed by what he’d seen that he resolved to start a band and play the festival.
“It was a very important time in my young age,” remembers Jamie. “I was like, ‘fuck me, all these people, all these bands are small punk bands, but they’re playing here and they’re all on tour, this is fucking sick this!’ Fuck uni, I hate uni, I’ll start a band. We’ll play The FEST.”
He did form a band with two best friends (Mike Wimbleton – bass/vocals and Matty Mills – drums) and he did play The FEST, but as is so often in life, things did not go as planned.
In the run-up to what is now lodged in their minds as ‘The Worst Festival Set Of All Time’, the fledgling Aerial Salad recorded a couple of digital EPs, played a handful of gigs and through sheer bluster and confidence, somehow blagged themselves onto The FEST.
However, bad luck, over-indulgence, technical difficulties and unfamiliar equipment led to a catastrophic performance that made sure the band were never invited back. “The set was so bad that as soon as it finished, I had to run out of the venue, hide around the corner and cry,” shudders Jamie.
Returning home with dreams shattered, they regrouped and forged on, and luck was on their side when they met former Flying Medallions frontman and Wonk Unit leader Alex Johnson who, so taken with the band’s spirit and vibe that he offered to mentor, manage and help put out their debut album on his label Plasterer.
He became ‘Daddy Wonk’ to the band, and, as they hit their stride on Roach, a sound and boldness started to emerge that soon turned heads in the UK punk scene. It was an album of melodious songs with brash, rough edges that made it fizzle with excitement.
Now, armed with a headful of new songs, under the guidance of Daddy Wonk and producer Paul Tipler (who recorded Mush by Leatherface), Aerial Salad have delivered nine songs of anthemic, driving punk rock that roars with disgust and joy at the world around them.
“It captures everything I’ve seen working as a temp in offices and generally being in my 20s trying to work myself and the world out. With some pop songs thrown in for fun,” admits Jamie.
Dirt Mall is an album by three best mates, experiencing life together, and taking it on. It will be available in two vinyl formats, 200 copies in dark blue and 300 in traditional black. Each copy will come with a CD. You can pre-order it here.
Catch Aerial Salad live on tour in the UK this spring with Californian punks Decent Criminal at the following dates: