There is a school of thought that punk predates the 1970’s and is actually evident in the garage rock of the 60’s and the hoodlum image of 50’s rockabilly. It’s a theory I wholeheartedly support. What is punk if not the sound of teenage rebellion against ‘Whatever you got?’ If it’s a truth held to be self evident that all rock and roll can be punk if the ‘tood is right then a band like The Pink Slips don’t need to explain themselves to anyone.
This is rock and roll, this is punk and in this post modern world it’s also indie, garage rock, pop, grunge and probably entirely suitable to soundtrack a movie too. In fact it’s the 50’s pastiche in their sleeve image which sort of informs this songs sound the most. I’m never one to hear an album by its cover (unless it’s Powerwolf, their sleeves are spot on) and yet The Pink Slips simple retro kitsch sleeve design looks exactly how the record sounds. You know it’s not doowop but post punk even thought they’re wearing Pink Ladies style jackets and looking like they’re designed to play in Al’s Diner right after Weezer finish filming the Buddy Holly video.
The marvels of their graphic design department aside this youthful take on an age-old formula is perfectly formed and entirely convincing as a whole sound. Compared to their other synth lead single I’m Ready and the minimalist growl of Gimmie, Trigger has a depth to its recipe.
Break it down into its component parts and you’ve got Poison Ivy Bass lines that stalk. There’s WooOhhOhh backing vox which sound like they have been lifted from a Joshua Homme side project. There’s that stroppy girl vocalist vamping it up while playing with toying with the syllables in each word in lyrics. The beat is locked down until the full rawk kicks in.
If I finish off playing the ‘This band sounds like’ Game I’d describe them as Sleater Kinney soundtracking ‘Grease 3: Punk Rock Comes to Rydell’. Or I’d describe the song as A Riot Grrl Singer fronting a Garage Band covering a QOTSA B-side. Or perhaps Trigger is The (Baby) Cramps do High School Musical. It’s a corking tune an no mistake.