Grade 2 – Break the Routine LP/ CD (Pirates Press/ Demons Run Amok)

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Well this one is easy enough to review, as I’ve had this fine slab of wax for a year or so since it was originally released in Germany by Contra records. This reissue and partnership with Pirates Press and Demons Run Amok should see this album get another round of exposure and help push rising stars Grade 2 even further into the limelight. Based on the Isle of Wight, Grade 2 originally started off as young kids – we’re talking 14/15 years old when they began playing live and releasing records. Right from the offset there was a spark about these lads and through determination and hardwork that fuse has been well and truly lit with this album. Much like Lion’s Law did a couple of years earlier, Grade 2 have captured the hearts and souls of audiences around the globe with their catchy and extremely well executed songwriting and playing. They’ve worked on their sound which has both feet firmly planted in the Oi! scene but within the relative constraints of that genre they include touches from a range of styles to stop their sound stagnating. I’m glad to see they have finally let guitarist Jack loose on main vocals on Falling Bridges as he has a great melodic style that hits a chord with me. Don’t get me wrong, bass player Sid has a strong style and presence, but this adds a fresh touch to the band’s sound. It’s a safe bet  that 2019 will be a big year for Grade 2. And deservedly so. Tom Chapman

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