Yorkshire RatsNorthern Ruff Records
By AJ Phink
The Yorkshire Rats Formed, somewhat unsurprisingly, in Yorkshire in 2004, the band is the brainchild of former Billy No Mates and Abrasive Wheels’ musician Don Mercy who was inspired by the roots driven punk of American groups like Social Distortion and Lucero, as well as the attitude of artists from the old school such as Stiff Little Fingers and The Ramones. The band has quickly built up an army of dedicated fans attracted to their fine blend of SoCal punk rock and 80s UK influences, and this latest release indicates that this is something that isn’t going to change anytime soon.
Opening track Alone Together hits you between the eyes with as finer two and half minutes as you’re going to experience this year, carrying the energy of Pennywise and the attitude of Social Distortion, which is all filtered through some fine Yorkshire grit. But this self titled EP isn’t a case of a powerful lead single padded out with filler, Where Do I Sign and No Way Out come close to being the equal of the initial punk blast, with both tracks carrying different elements of the Yorkshire Rats sound, and the EP closes with the slower burning Better Days Will Come.
This is a close to a perfect EP as punk rock as you’re gonna get, this is easily the finest release to date from the Yorkshire Rats, everything that you could want is encapsulated across the EP’s four tracks, from the hard hitting opener, that sits amongst my favourite songs from 2017, to the hopeful and more soulful closing number, borders on perfection. This self titled EP will be amongst my favourite releases of this year, and in a year that has contained it’s fair share of bad news and disappointments this is exactly the kind of release that we need to keep us going.
Yorkshire Rats released their self titled EP on Friday 16th June via Northern Ruff Records
The Yorkshire Rats EP can be ordered here