Apathy Cycle

Apathy Cycle

Written by: MAK on 03/12/2020 01:53:48

Somehow for the last decade, Californian skate punks Apathy Cycle have escaped my radar. As someone who loves the Crack Rocksteady genre, for a band that features ex-members of Intro5pect and Leftover Crack (two of my favourites), I’m astonished it has taken until 2020 to discover such an act. Alas, after a six-year gap between releases, Apathy cycle is following up their two debut EPs, with their debut, self-titled album.

The core Apathy Cycle sound is pure skate punk, with shredded riffs played at a breakneck pace and tenacious drums to match. Right from the off, “Premium Healthcare” and “Rise” pull no punches in creating high-octane punk tracks showing similarities to the likes of 88 Fingers Louie. After a small sample from Rick and Morty, cries of “Unity” lead us into “Forgotten Genocide”. Ominous sounding guitar licks ease into thrash-like riffs, creating a sense that the pits are about to open. Then out of nowhere, ska-inspired upstrokes hit your ears with fast melodic vocals and occasional duel shouts. The chorus remains directed towards skate punk vibes, but the back and forth switch between styles works amazingly well. The Leftover Crack influenced thrash-ska sound seeps through, showing resemblance to the track “Corrupt Vision”. “Muted Light”, slows things down a temporarily with a NOFX-like melodic punk track, fueled more meaningful lyricism about free speech than shredding hooks.

Now that the token “slow song” card has been played, the diversity in the Apathy Cycle sound barely varies. More of the adrenaline-filled skate-punk thrashers with big riffs and huge catchy sing-along choruses. The formula stays the same as perhaps “I Objectify” truly standing out due to gang vocals, plucky basslines and even a random sax solo snippet for a couple of seconds. Or “Critical Thinking” and “Antonia’s Against The Wall” briefly adding snippets of more ska-like upstrokes. Other than that, we just get a lot of the same Sonically. What makes the tracks stand out is the politically charged vibes you expect from musicians with backgrounds in other highly political bands. Throughout the album, we are treated to topics such as police Brutality (“Trigger Warning”), the exploitive American healthcare system (“Premium Healthcare”). Apathy Cycle confronts the topics surrounding corruption, empathy, divisiveness in the modern world and even the Armenian Genocide with their lyrics.

This is a fun-sounding headbanger of an album with some proper catch elements, and a couple of cool little twists here and there. Apathy Cycle pulls off the high-energy skate-punk style incredibly well, however, the album could do with a tad more diversity. Tracks like “Forgotten Genocide” and “Antonia’s Against The Wall” are not only a welcome addition of variety, but the blending of influences fuel the better songs on the release. As a whole, this album is probably one of the more ear pricking skate-punk releases in recent years.


Download: Forgotten Genocide, I Objectify, Trigger Warning
For The Fans Of: 88 Fingers Louie, Anti-Flag, Strike Anywhere
Listen: Facebook

Release date 24.04.2020
No Time Records

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