The Packets formed in 1997 in Adelaide, South Australia in 2001 they moved to the Gold Coast in Queensland then in 2010 went back to Adelaide. This band has been making noise for a long time and that noise is a combination of snotty punk mixed with pop style hooks.
The band’s sixth studio release ‘Bad People’ came out on the 15th of November 2019. Recorded by Evan James at Twin Earth Studios, with Cover Art by Melbourne punk/cartoonist/satirist Fred Negro.
The first track Bad People [2:39], starts with some rock n roll style guitar pattern featuring some well-timed musical stabs from the rest of the band. After a few bars, the music gets quieter with bass and drums backing the vocals during the verse. The lyrical content consists of funny lines about wishing bad things on bad people, some of the lines in this song are hilarious. As the chorus starts the guitars can be heard again bringing high energy into the mix with some distorted power chords and simple yet catchy vocals singing the line “bad things happen to bad people” in two different patterns. The lead guitar work on this song is awesome, played in a way that it is at times what holds the song together while navigating the changes from verse to chorus. The guitar solo part of the song does enough to feel legitimate without letting the energy nose dive. Then finally one more verse runs through with a comically timed sample sound of glass breaking and the lead guitar playing a siren style riff. It fits perfectly with the hilarious lyrics. The song has a great wind-down ending with the same rock n roll style guitar pattern as the intro.
The second track is called Handjob [2:07] and this was the first single to be lifted from the new release. It came out on the 18th of September 2019. The track starts with a sweet lead guitar lick, this awesome lead guitar work is a huge part of the song and its musical hooks. The musical soundscape of the song is similar to the 12 bar blues in its simplicity with some distortion leaning to a heavy sound. Lyrically it’s comical and entertaining with some backup vocals that sound very Beach Boys inspired and some shouty backups using the word ‘stroke’ in a build-up fashion.
The next song Shut Ya Mouth (Or I’ll Smash Ya Face In) [2:09] was the second single to be lifted from the new release. It came out on the 30th of October 2019. I love the trumpet on this track which is all in musically from the start and half expected the guitar to start playing something ska style in the verse but no. The guitar starts playing some progression of palm-muted power chords that really drive this part of the song. The build-up moments pre-chorus are well written and the chorus parts feature simplistic yet catchy hooks which seems to be evident in all these songs. The lyrics are amusing and feel on par with everything I’ve heard so far.
Track 4 is Ugly Girls [2:15] which starts with fairly clean chords on the guitar and some vocals that have a country vibe but it doesn’t last long before it turns into a faster more skate punk style song. The verse parts on guitar are palm-muted power chords and heading into the chorus the lead guitar plays a simple repetitive lick that adds an element of pop to the mix and the section of music builds to another catchy chorus with good vocal hooks to get you singing along. The verse/chorus parts are broken up by a bridge and a great guitar solo before a quiet part to wind down the song with some loud musical stabs from the guitar in quick succession helping end the song.
The next song is Dial 666 S.A.T.A.N. [2:31]. This song starts off all in with the lead guitar whaling away, rhythm guitar plays some palm-muted power chords as it heads into the verse the lead guitar is playing a lick that follows the vocal melody. Build up parts have guitar chords ringing out. There is a lot of technique on display here in regards to the music. Lyrically its very funny and vocals display versatility on par with track 2.
Track 6 is Soap [2:58] and this song has a really cool bass intro into soft Verse parts made up of palm-muted power chords Wailing guitar parts from the lead guitar. The verse parts are a typical punk chord pattern from the rhythm guitar and feel stripped back with the vocals being delivered in a way that is almost laid back. Lyrically this song feels like its more serious than the others and musically it feels like everyone gave it their all. The chorus parts are overflowing with energy and the lead guitar shines so bright. There is some great drum work in what feels like a bridge part and the way the band shifts from soft to heavy is on point.
The last song ‘Surrounded By Dickheads’ [2:52] starts with an awesome drum intro with vocals and bass joining in before the guitars. Its a great sing-along closing track and includes a lyrical reference to ‘planet of the apes’ leading into the chorus parts which are all in musically and have a full sound but the energy in this song carries a different vibe. The bridge will more than likely give you a chuckle before you end up trying to sing along to the final chorus. Listen up at the end cause this song has a ripper ending.
In summary, the ‘Bad People’ release is a collection of 7 well written comedic punk songs with pop elements that make them catchy and although all of the songs seem to have those factors in common they all have something special giving them a sense of originality.
The Packets are Gav Packet – vocals/bass
Mike Monsma – vocals/guitar
Rob Monsma – vocals/lead guitar
Craig Roberts – vocals/guitar/trumpet
Bruno Romano – vocals/drums
The Packets LINKS
Apple Music https://music.apple.com/gb/artist/the-packets/id790018138
Bandcamp Link http://thepackets.bandcamp.com/album/bad-people
Facebook Link https://www.facebook.com/thePackets/
Triple J Unearthed Link https://www.triplejunearthed.com/artist/packets