I was pleasantly surprised to receive an envelope in the mail from Joliet, Illinois’ punk rockers the Lumberjerks. It contained their newest EP – Four More – and a letter stating the album was recorded on good ole fashioned reel-to-reel analog tape. The name of the band was enough to peak my interest, especially when I considered it might’ve been taken from the Looney Tunes cartoon of the same name in which the proper English-speaking chipmunks Mac and Tosh run afoul of a lumber mill.
The power trio belt out four tunes in less than ten minutes. “Trailer Trash,” with its better-than-an-alarm clock drumming, sticks a middle finger back at Uncle Sam and gives shout-outs to the Misfits and Sex Pistols. “Schizo Episode,” with its near-metal riffs and angry vocals captures bipolarity better than any mopey emo band could ever hope to try. “Somthin” has some of the best guitar work on the record and must be one of their best live tunes. The closer, “Garage Hopping,” is about wanting to break out of the rut of delinquency yet being tempted by the occasional thrill of it. It also proves that the Lumberjerks aren’t just snotty punks who enjoy booze and the occasional “bag of shake in cellophane.” They are good musicians. The bass work carries the track while the guitars slam throughout it and the drums change directions when you least expect it.
You can find the Lumberjerks on Bandcamp, where you can get Four More and their first EP, First Three, at ridiculous prices. A full album by these cats will be something to snag once it’s released.
Keep your mind open.