Though Constant Insult was formed in 2014 around the unquestionably good idea of writing songs that sound like the Rolling Stones combined with the Marked Men, “History in Shorthand” doesn’t sound much like that. Simply put, Constant Insult plays driving, dynamic, and well-written punk rock that's held firmly together by charm. Live, they're a controlled high-energy outburst, captured by Matt Castore in studio here on their first proper full-length album.
Sara Pette's percolating bass and Mike Wilson's frenetic-yet-tight pounding and rolling drums drive and ground the rhythm section somewhere between Chattanooga and the East Bay. Vocalists and guitarists Katie Thornton and Wil Olsen trade cathartic harmonies on songs about life choices, bad decisions, pain physical and existential, and the transcendence and confusion of human relationships. Many of the songs rest on a pleasant foundation, but the band spins their sound around dark melodies, fast tempos, a bit of noisiness, and the catchy choruses you desperately need. Following their rapid-fire 2015 self-titled EP, “History in Shorthand” continues in the same stylistic vein while expanding the boundaries of the band’s capabilities. You know – a few years worth of evolution, but no funny stuff. And importantly, they do it without ever exceeding the song length of three minutes and ten seconds.
PRESSING OF 300 ON BLACK WAX! Let's Pretend Recs.