Artist: The Knast
Album: Reckless Soul
Label: Casuals Audio Group, Ltd.
Release Date: 9.8.17
Don’t count The Knast among those eager to shovel more dirt on rock ‘n’ roll’s grave, although its obituary has been written at least a thousand times in the last few years. They need to see a body first before they believe it is truly dead.
Perhaps born at the wrong time, the Seattle foursome, decked out in sunglasses and stylish clothing, dive headlong into a vibrant and colorful—if occasionally downbeat and dark—maelstrom of ’90s Brit-pop and vintage ’60s psychedelic garage-rock on Reckless Soul. They emerge baptized by an unholy trinity of Oasis, the Brian Jonestown Massacre and the Who. Opening with the drugged-out swagger and detached cool of a trippy “Side Effects,” where the lazy, lysergic guitars that also reappear in “Situation Vacant” sound fashionably decadent, Reckless Soul culminates with the bright supernova of “Time Out of Mind.” The rest is just as satisfying.
Cohesive band dynamics, focused songwriting and subversive hooks win the day, as The Knast bash out the bold, energetic title track with youthful glee and ride the melodic “Here and There” into big skies of expansive choruses. Eschewing the gloomy drone of Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, they make the clean, sparkly jangle of “Out of Season” shine like a gem from Teenage Fanclub’s Grand Prix and while Reckless Soul won’t win any awards for originality, it does capture the raw vitality and spirit that made their heroes transcendent.