Photo: Gino Depinto
From Hell’s Kitchen, New York, resurrected punk band Spoiler NYC recently dropped their new album, Banned in 38 States, via Brookvale Records.
Made up of Alan Robert (vocals, bass), Chris “Junkyard” Selletti (guitar), and Tommy “The Kid” Clayton (drums), Banned in 38 States includes two new tracks produced by Grammy-winner Ken Lewis, along with 12 remastered songs from the band’s debut.
Speaking to the album, Alan Robert says, “I grew up on punk rock when it was dangerous. When burned-out buildings lined Hell’s Kitchen instead of these shiny, billion-dollar, high-rise condos. We’re bringing back that raw, old-school angst with Spoiler NYC. The feeling that chaos can break out at any given moment.”
Spoiler NYC’s genesis occurred when, after the loss of a close friend, Robert – co-founder and bassist of Brooklyn metal-hardcore outfit Life of Agony – started writing songs while on tour. The songs, more punk than metal or hard rock, didn’t fit with Life of Agony’s sound. Still, Robert continued writing with Chris Silletti. In due course, the project was given a name – Spoiler NYC.
Spoiler NYC signed with SOS Records in the spring of 2007, followed by releasing their debut album, Grease Fire in Hell’s Kitchen.
Encompassing 14-tracks, Banned in 38 States begins with the title track, opening on raunchy, blistering guitars topped by Robert’s snarling, rasping vocals. Highlights on the album include “Damaged Goods,” which rolls out on dark, muscular guitars riding a tight, pushing rhythm. Robert’s vocals, accompanied by barking harmonies, imbue the lyrics with reckless energy.
With its sleazy guitar intro, “High Friends in Low Places” pumps out heavy waves of roiling guitars as Robert’s grimacing voice injects the lyrics with scowling textures. Syncopated, rumbling drums open “Grease Fire In Hell’s Kitchen,” leading into brawny guitars laced with high-octane surges and sneering vocals. A raw, searing guitar solo gives the tune scorching tones.
A personal favorite because of its driving, locomotive rhythm, and viscous guitars, the impetus of “No Worries” gives the song pulsing, proximate movement.
Conjuring up suggestions of George Thorogood fronting The Offspring, with Banned in 38 States, Spoiler NYC delivers galvanizing, visceral punk.