Christmas – Scum As You Are (Kidnap Music / Cargo Records)

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If Appetite for Selfdestruction and Lose Your Illusion took album title stabs at the most dangerous band in the world turning into bloaters, then Christmas have opted to break some teen spirit with new album Scum As You Are. That band name, right? I mean, who calls their band Christmas? Four madcap Germans who don’t give a fuck, that’s who!

In 2018, Christmas don’t deviate from what Christmas do best. That is, full-on punk rock with one foot in the UK82 camp and the other in a bucket of sleaze. The first thing that strikes is that sonically this is the best the band have sounded on tape. From the get-go on Army of Losers, the snare drum shoots like a machine gun in some shit afternoon war film. Max Motherfucker is in fine voice too as You Bore Me could give Charlie Harper a run for his UK Subs money.

As ever, the appeal to the Turbojugend is not lost and album highlight Good Times, High Fives is the case in point. Ferocious, catchy punk rock to lose your shit over as the toms make you pound your chest like Tarzan on an amphetamine binge. To wrap things up, Christmas leave with a track that bulges over the four minute mark in the shape of Sex Sells. Are these Germans going all prog on us? Hell no! After some distorted bass work from Lobster Louie, Max spits through the speakers before the band venture down a mash of punk rock avenues over train track drumming, cumulating in a dark swamp with guitar feedback on fire.

Scum As You Are is tight, fierce and everything you’d expect if you’re already familiar with the band. If you’re not, then there’s no better way than to burn your virgin ears with this beast. No fancy guitar wankery is needed, just big, angry, struggling chords with some one string fun thrown in for good measure. Is it time for a cliched writer’s wet dream of a parting sentence yet? Oh, go on then, if I must. Well, I wish it could be Christmas every day… Ginge Knievil

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