THE STRIKES: Out of Luck EP
By Jacob Connor
Might be confusing if they ever wind up on a festival bill with The Strokes. Wellington punks The Strikes helpfully include pictures of the seminal Ramones and Sex Pistol LPs on their CD sleeve to indicate where they’re coming from. Six straight ahead, four to the floor rockers, no fuss, no muss. ‘We’ve passed the point of subtlety’ Lafcadio G. Zuccarello sings in vaguely Brooklyn accent on World Today. Pleasingly, a long Kiwi vowel (can’t) pops up in Violent Visions. The band seem to have a good (bad) attitude and their songs are punchy and funny. Like the Ramones, the songwriting skirts a fine line between clever and stupid. It’s a pastiche, but a loving one. You could say The Strikes are to the New York Dolls what early D4 was to the MC5. The EP works because it doesn’t overreach, but chunders up simple material recorded cleanly (by Darren Maynard and Mike Gibson at Inca Studios). The players work with their limitations – the guitar solo in Want You Out stutters and fumbles to a conclusion and is all the better for its hamfistedness. A likeable introduction.