• Panic Beats, The – You’re Next!

    Panic Beats, The – You’re Next!
    Released by: Infested Records
    Released on: October 1st, 2013.
    Purchase From Bandcamp

    The great state of Michigan’s only one man horror punk band is back with another six songs of death and mayhem. Didn’t they just put out an album a couple of months ago? They did, and it was good. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t room in the world for more. And now we have more, in the form of a new six song EP available on CD or digital download.

    This album marks the first time that the lyrics to the songs aren’t directly inspired by any movies (despite the fact that a movie came out with the same name not that long ago, this album and its contents have nothing to do with that picture). Once again, Dale VanThomme is handling vocals, guitar, bass and drums but he gets some help by Chad Roberts here and there on guitar duties.

    The complete track listing for You’re Next! is as follows:

    You’re Next / The Butcher / Smell your Blood / Another Nail / Just A Dream / Red And Blue

    The title track is more or less a minute and a half long diatribe about someone next on a killer’s ‘to do’ list, noting that she was born to die, overtop of some fast buzzsaw guitars. It’s short, not in the least bit sweet, and completely to the point. It’s also a fair bit heavier than what we’ve heard from Panic Beats in the past.

    The Butcher is more in line with what I’d guess you’d say is their traditional sound, it’s got that Lillingtons style sound to it but the lyrics are darker, as VanThomme sings for two and a half minutes about a victim who is ‘nothing but meat to me’ and how he’ll ‘put you on the block and chop you up,’ Someone’s working out some serial killer obsessions on this album for sure! Smell Your Blood is another two and a half minute track that again presents things from a killer’s point of view. It’s a little lighter in musical tone but not in lyrical content. The title says it all, a man is called by the scent of blood and it won’t end well for the woman that is bleeding, even if he had nothing but good intentions. Some nice harmonizing in the backing vocals on this track. A bit of a Misfits influence here maybe?

    Half way through, we get Another Nail up next. At 2:46 it’s the longest track on the EP, and once again we hear a nice Lillingtons influence in the guitar sound. There’s some more harmonizing here as the lyrics talk about burying a woman alive and all that is involved in putting ‘another nail in your coffin.’ This isn’t as fast as the other tracks on the disc but it’s a strong one regardless. Just A Dream is a fast, tight, 2:20 track with some great harmonies that start off the song before the vocals come in and tell us about what happens when a woman gets bound and gagged and tossed in a trunk. ‘Just keep telling yourself that it’s just a dream and that when you wake up everything will be alright.’ This is seriously catchy, almost happy in its melody, but obviously pretty dark in lyrical content even if we get some peppy ‘woh oh oh oh oh’ in the background. Last but not least, Red And Blue spends 2:21 exploring what happens when a maniac with a body in the trunk and a knife on the back seat gets pulled over by the cops. ‘I’m really sorry officer, I just wanted some fresh meat!’

    There’s a dark sense of humor to all of this that makes it work. The riffs are fast and catchy and the vocals are actually really effective in the way that sometimes they’re just a little off key. More so than the full length albums, You’re Next! is fast, short and to the point. VanThomme isn’t screwing around here and while he may not be pulling ideas from horror and exploitation movies of the past, he’s very definitely still playing with those ideas. It’s good stuff, crazy catchy, and very definitely worth checking out.