Shark Soup “Fatlip Showbox” Review
Published in Blog Archive, Culture Bully.
This group of hipster, neo-punks from Erlangen, Germany deliver a brand of energetic punkabilly along the likes of The Living End and former tour mates, the Nekromantix. I find it increasingly interesting to see how sounds and trends can spread worldwide and expand while still maintaining an original essence. Such is the case with the expansive sounds of Shark Soup. For fans of the rockabilly scene, there won’t be any unnecessary tangents into the experimental unknown, and you’ll be satisfied. For fans with tastes leaning towards the punk rock side of things, Shark Soup fulfill as their songs generally characterize a faster, more aggressive pace than typical rockabilly. As numerous listens have proven, it becomes progressively intriguing to see just how a typically American genre has sent these German emissaries into further development of a increasingly tired sound.
“Holy Water” triumphs at revving the quintessential leather jacket, bass driven sounds of the genre. Though having a prototypical swinger-bounce, this hellish street-dance theme materializes nicely into the rest of the album, with most tracks displaying a stronger, grittier pace than the one before. Undeniable similarities are standard within the rockabilly scene, as most bands unintentionally find themselves using one other as musical references. This is the case with Fatlip Showbox’s fundamental tracks, “Roadkill Reaction Revolution” (a strong Horton Heat-like instrumental) and the quasi-mainstream rock “Burn The Lights Out.” The strongest song is the straight-line punk “Riddle-n-Dead,” with “Small Town Mayhem” a close second. “STM” defines the album as the mosaic it is, combining “whoa whoa” elements of punk, explicit rockabilly, and stomp rock; showing that this group of German natives not only acknowledge the work of bands before them, but continue to grow from that work, searching for a balance yet to be found.