ALBUM REVIEW: Knife Club – We Are Knife Club (TNS Records)

After months of online teasing, it was recently revealed that Knife Club, a new name on the DIY punk scene, are a ‘supergroup’ consisting of members of various bands from Manchester-based indie punk label TNS Records.

The line-up features Zoë Barrow (Casual Nausea) and Andy Davies (Revenge Of The Psychotronic Man/TNSrecords) on vocals, Eliott Verity (Nosebleed) on guitar/vocals, Dan Flanagan (Haest/Matilda’s Scoundrels) on guitar, Dani Rascal (Faintest Idea) on bass/vocals and Chris ‘Big Hands’ Hinsley (Revenge of…) on drums.

Formed after a drunken night in Hastings, the band built interest in a secretive fashion while booking gigs at Rebellion, Manchester Punk Festival and Wotsit Called Fest, alongside a series of club gigs in the UK and Denmark.

They have been negotiating a North/South divide, the logistical nightmare of travelling hundreds of miles for band practices, and justifying why they are together at random gigs in random places at random times.

Knife Club. Pic by Hold My Pint Photography.

Sadly, many of Knife Club’s planned gigs have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic, so for now we’ll have to make do with this 22 minutes of furious noise.

It was recorded and produced by Ben Hannah from Nosebleed in January 2020 – only the second time the whole band had been in the same room.
There are moments of hardcore punk aggression, a garage edge to the guitar sound and lots of melody and addictive sing-a-long choruses.

It’s a thoroughly enjoyable slice of punk rock noise from the off, and I’d guess Davies has a big say in the lyrics and song titles, as many remind me a lot of his old band, who split up in 2018.

It’s not (always) quite as frenetic as Revenge, which means you can make out most of the words, which is always a bonus, but song titles like The Tibby Tan Tiger and I Mean, I’d Probably Take An Adidas Endorsement are a bit of a giveaway.

Knife Club. Pic by Hold My Pint Photography.

Davies and Barrow share vocals, and it works well, particularly on the likes of Working Class Tories, ‘Adidas’, where they insist, tongue in cheek, “DIY is full of shit”, and Do You Want A Knife With That Salad?

Only one of the 12 songs breaches the two-and-a-half-minute mark, which gives you an idea of the blistering pace of the album.

Standout moments? Difficult, because there’s not a bad song here, but I love Artex, where the co-vocalists show real venom as they sing “I”ve got an itchy brain, it’s driving me insane, it’s not just that I can’t think, I’m lost in the ceiling”. Great stuff. 8/10.

We Are Knife Club is available on CD and as a limited run of 300 red vinyl LPs.
Gary Welford
gary.ipamusic@gmail.com
ipamusic.co.uk owner