free download: ‘the mixtapes’ ep from yes rebels. old school garage hooks and new school noise out of bristol. #soundcheck

February 17, 2014

The concept is so simple, it’s a wonder more bands haven’t thought of it. You share one of Yes Rebels’ videos, and in return the band gives you a free download of the song in question. That’s the model behind Yes Rebels’ latest EP The Mixtapes; a 4 song collection of old-school garage hooks and new-school noise.

By Nathan Leigh, AFROPUNK Contributor

The distribution model may be novel, but it’s the music that’s worthy of attention. Bristol UK’s Yes Rebels have Buzzcocks songcraft mixed with Fugazi and Pixies experimentation. It’s an update of the garage sound for the post-post-punk world. (I still love me some post-punk, but at this point, it takes more than angular guitars and danceable beats to capture my attention.) Bobby Anderson—son of Brand New Heavies singer Carleen Anderson—is a force behind the mic. His voice rides the line between soul sensitivity and garage swagger. On the surf-inflected “Thems the Breaks” his voice goes from cool and controlled to the verge of breaking.

Drummer Des is the ultimate in-the-pocket drummer. His beats are minimal, but when he lets loose on the breakdown to “Sailor J Serenade” he never breaks his stride. It’s the great tragedy of our era that most drummers with chops don’t see any value in playing understated. (Well, I guess the actual great tragedy of our era is either the fact that we could do something about climate change and totally aren’t, or the fact that America’s racists have perfected talking in code to such a degree that they can talk about bullshit like “stand your ground” and “stop and frisk” with a straight face on national television…but uh. Drums are also hard?) Speaking of which, Yes Rebels close out the EP with “Who Wants To Be An American?” It’s a question ringing in the ears of every person living with the refuse of 200 years of American Exceptionalism. “That state of mind’s gonna make you sick / Who wants to be an American? / They’re only making it up.”
Share the videos for your free downloads, or stream the whole thing on Soundcloud. But either way, don’t sit out Yes Rebels’ The Mixtapes EP.