US Weekly are a four piece band. Members Christopher Nordahl, Ryan Fitzgibbon, Ryan Curtis and Kent Hale are from Austin, TX, but don’t let that dissuade you. There’s no self-conscious obscurity or hip-by-association bullshittery to this band. This band could, in reality, be from just about anywhere USA and their tone would remain unique, focused, intact. On April 22nd, US Weekly will be releasing their wilfully-google-confusing, self-titled debut album. You can hear the first single from the album below, it’s called “American Piss” and it’s better than good.
A whole bunch of people are going to spend (wasted) time debating where this single, and following album, will sit in the recordstore category files. Punk? No-Wave? It’s irrelevant, quite honestly, how you fit this stuff into genre or subgenre. – That’s a comment made with no intention of brown-nosing a band with a kind of ‘oh you guys, you’re better than genre’ fluttering of the eyelashes. The point is – this shit is loud, and it’s salty-knuckled, but most of all it’s justified. Just stack it by the cash register and play it over the in-store sound system and the good people will know what to do.
On “American Piss” there is unadulterated passion that we feel on the rest of the album. Not the kind of anemic facsimile of punk that has been served to the kids to the point where they now think underage drinking, smashing things up,and smoking cigarettes will alter the course of history. You know the kind of thing “I love you, you don’t love me. I feel sad” or “I want to do things, but there are rules preventing me from doing things. I feel sad”. No – US Weekly contains none of the bullshit that has been robbing people of empathy, and therefore genuine revolt.
This track, and this album is set to rage against the dying of sense. This stuff is a sober, numbing, sonically dislocating assault. In one hand utterly angry and in the other hand, perhaps more importantly – this album is utterly compassionate. The kind of alchemy that takes anger and offers creativity. So, let’s use that word again – it’s justified.
Speaking on the motives behind “American Piss” Christopher Nordahl from the band said this:
“December 27th 2015, Disneyland, CA. That morning on TV I had watched the chief of the Cleveland PD say that the officers who shot Tamir Rice would not face disciplinary charges.
I stood corralled in line waiting 90 minutes to ride the Haunted Mansion, thinking that the white cops who shot Tamir Rice would carry on with their lives while his had been cut short. Thinking about what must surely be hundreds of thousands of gallons of shit and piss coursing through the sewers beneath Disneyland, veins of waste beneath the former orange grove. The most magical place on earth didn’t seem so magical.
“American Piss” from our first LP invokes riding Splash Mountain while tragedy and injustice occurs nearby and we wait idly for the apocalypse. Flash forward a year later, and it’s nearly impossible to keep ignoring, maybe that’s a good thing. Maybe it’s a wakeup call to resist, instead of paying $6 for a churro at Disneyland.”
There’s an authentic tone in Nordhal’s words here and in the song, and on the album. There’s a frankness about things, and also a dark humor. And also a whole bunch of solid playing from a band that sounds tight as fuck. You should check out the handful of live videos of the band that are available online. The clips aren’t all that well-produced, but the playing and the energy of the band relay something of what’s captured on this album, that will keep you going until release day.
We award US Weekly 9 out of 10 unflushable turds of fried gold.
KEEP AN EYE ON US WEEKLY
image credit: nick eubank