Dear Chester, I only realised a few days ago that it’s nearly been a year …
One of the great things about growing up is sitting around the fire and listening to grandpa share stories, drinking in the wisdom of someone far ahead of us in years and experience.
Now, it would be a amiss to label Bodyjar a band of grandpa’s. Their new EP Terra Frima still thrashes with the fury of the next skateboarding quartet from the suburbs, and that’s not meant to sound ironic. From the opening bars of Burning It Down For Nothing it’s obvious that, despite a ten-year hiatus, Bodyjar have lost none of the energy or power that put them on an international stage in the global punk boom of the 90’s. Rather, Terra Firma is like a refreshing re-telling of a short but classic tale. It might be predictable, and everyone knows the twist, but family members still gather in eager expectation to hear what they have to say.
Terra Firma is an early Christmas present for those who remember a punk rock scene before pokies and phones, a true throwback to the good ol’ DIY days.
The one-two combo of Moneybox and Get It Right perfectly illustrates this positive predictability. The former drips with the Melbourne grittiness that made the band so attractive to a global audience. With the professional front of Flinders Street meeting the aesthetic of Cherry Bar, Moneybox is a reminder that you can’t just play instruments and expect people to two-step on demand. Unique songwriting, dynamic variation and saving the best till last (the long anticipated Bad Religion drum beat that is impossible to type out but you all know what I mean) are evidence that despite their years, Bodyjar still give a shit about writing good music.
The latter then adds some minor chords to give it that darkness that pricks up the ears of the introverts in the scene, whilst still maintaining that trademark youthful energy that the band have held onto over the years. There might not be anything new under the sun stylistically, but if it ain’t broke after over 20 years, you’d be crazy to fix it.
Overall, Terra Firma is evidence for the sceptics that the Bodyjar spirit is alive and kicking, and with tracks that push 180BPM called Elon Musk, you bet these Dad’s aren’t behind the times either. Another little footnote to an already rich history, Terra Firma is an early Christmas present for those who remember a punk rock scene before pokies and phones, a true throwback to the good ol’ DIY days.
STANDOUT TRACKS: Moneybox, Get It Right
STICK THIS NEXT TO: Strung Out, NOFX, Sum 41