Hot Nuns – Rude, Dumb & Anxious (Loyal Blood Records, 2020)

Can I shock you? I like Hot Nuns: a Norwegian duo (drums / bass guitar) who have set out to record
with a simple rule in mind: only get down on tape what they can provide for a live audience, and you simply can’t fault their intentions or the final product itself.

How’s about no nonsense, impeccably powerful and well-crafted punk rock, played with a resolute
attitude and all tied up in an outrageously tight package, then? All this and without a single guitar in sight. It’s not often you can give a song the label of ‘anthem’ sans guitars and Rude, Dumb & Anxious is an EP that does it again and again, with each of its four tracks demanding premium space in your long-term memory.

Can’t Get Over You nails it from the outset, with the never-gonna-quit spirit of drummer, Sigurd Haakaas’, performance, which compliments the splendidly infectious eponymous refrain; more than enough to make 1998 Backyard Babies shake their badly tattooed fists in a jealous rage. I Love You Still, I Always Will continues with the winning formula: the cool simplicity of the hefty bass riff, the sing-a-along chorus and funky breakdown make this a definite one to have cheeky jig to.

The cover of The Boys’ First Time, other than sounding pretty decent and implicitly announcing that the band are into ‘70s English punk rock, doesn’t really add much to the record; I would have much preferred to have been in receipt of another stonking original.

Despite the snare teetering on the verge of a gated reverb stand-off with the armies of good taste, this EP is almost faultless. Title track, Rude, Dumb & Anxious brings the EP to a more reflective close in a slight change of tack – almost bordering on grungy college rock. Just like with a classic black and white film – if it’s good – you soon forget about the absence of colour… what’s a guitar again?

Available on 10in vinyl from the Hot Nuns bandcamp page

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