by Nathan Cardiff

There are few constants in this life, but one thing is for damn sure: Red Kate are never gonna stop fighting. The band is back with their nasty vocals and the gnarly squeal of guitars on unamerican activities, their follow-up to 2013’s When The Troubles Come. They sound a little more grizzled, but certainly no less mad than they have always been. Take a listen to the buzzy grunge of “Punch The Clock” which gives a hypnotic drone of monotony to recreate the work day that just will never end, but bursts forth with rallying lyrics (“But one of these days, boy/You’ll punch the boss instead”). They fire off on searing songs like “You Don’t Speak For Me” and “Get Out” and bring their tongue-in-cheek writing to the black humor of “I Got A Gun” (it’s only funny if we realize the reality of the situation Red Kate paints).

The energy the band brings has always been impressive and even with thirteen towering tracks on the record, the pulse is always high. “Better” and “Take It Back” are mosh-pit starters, while “You Ought To Know” is the perfect song to get the crowd shouting with the band; the call to open your eyes to the societal injustices happening every day. “On My Mind,” one of the singles from 2014’s split release with Kansas City’s The Bad Ideas makes an appearance towards the end of unamerican activities; a stellar foray into pop from the raucous group. They follow it with the bass shaking “I Want You” and the smashing beat of “She Doesn’t Need Your Love” before the twisting closer “Heart Of The City” leaves you writhing for more. Red Kate make the noise we need to hear. The reactionary force to the bullshit of everyday life.

Favorite Tracks: “On My Mind” & “I Want You”

by Nathan Cardiff

Editor’s note: You can see Red Kate perform songs off their new album when they play the Replay this Friday, April 8, with Stiff Middle Fingers and ExtraOrdinary.



Nathan has contributed to I Heart Local Music since November 2012. He lives in Kansas City, MO.

Leave a Reply