Johnny Panic : Burn Your Youth
Sometimes you'd think that the Manic Street Preachers were the only band ever to have had an intelligent thought. Bands with little in common with them musically, such as Kinesis and Rancid, along with R*E*P*E*A*T's very own Miss Black America and The Virgin Suicides, have been accused (with varying degrees of accuracy) of wanting to be 'the new Manics', for daring to want to write about more than their skateboards, their girl friends or their ganga.
While this is a great compliment to the fatty Welsh ones, it is hardly helpful in describing new bands. One such band to suffer this double edged compliment are Johnny Panic for infusing their raw, guitar powered melodies with a social consciousness - "everyone of our songs is trying to get something across." Teenage suicide, drug destruction, a determination to question everything and an all consuming fear of, in the word's of Sylvia Plath, 'the death of the imagination', mark out the stance of this fast emerging four piece.
However anyone believing Kerrang! and hoping for Generation Terrorists mark 2 will be sadly disappointed. Johnny Panic have ideas and intelligence and attitude yes, but they are no tribute band. This single is dirty and sleezy and brash and catchy as hell; names like New York Dolls and The Wildhearts and even Cheap Trick spring more readily to mind than our friends from Blackwood.
This record is just what a music scene grown bloated and boring needs. Energy, adrenaline, excitement and yes ideas combine to produce a single which will have you putting it on repeat play on your stereo and then leaping around the room and perhaps half believing (again) that rock'n'roll can change your life and indeed change the world.
If only for 3 minutes.
Can't believe I missed them at The Portland while I was in the USA last week!
'Burn You Youth' is out on September 6th
Visit Johnny Panic here.