Stomper 98 – Althergebracht LP/ CD (Contra Records)

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Nowadays Stomper 98 belong the senior generation of skinhead bands, having been around for some twenty years. The last few years have seen a new crop of bands giving the old school boots and braces brigade a right kick up the backside. The likes of Lions Law, Crim and Grade Two have shown there is a new generation coming through that won’t take any prisoners nor will they hesitate to steal the scenes crown. So for Stomper 98 to stay on top of things there was only one thing they could do – release an absolute killer album. And guess what – with Althergebracht they have delivered that knockout punch and then some. Over the past years they have enlisted some of the big guns and now boast names such as Phil Templar and Lars Frederiksen within their ranks and it’s fair to say that has given the band a new depth to their sound. The old ingredients are still there – the saxophone, “stomping” skinhead music with Tommi Tox’s driving riffs topped by vocalist Sebi’s barked vocals (all sung in German), but these tunes have massively benefited from the spit and polish that those elder statesmen from the scene have added. Haunting guitar melodies really hit the spot, with big catchy chorus lines making each tune memorable. It sounds nothing like Rancid, Old Firm Casuals or The Templars, the sound is still 98% Stomper with the added melodies making this album 100% skinhead rock’n’roll and already surely this will be one of the musical highlights of the year. Tom Chapman

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