9/10 Mike Staff review, 30 January 2014
Chicago's Epicycle were much lauded in the late '70s scene they sprung from, but fizzled out before they made any significant impact on the musical landscape of the time. HoZac haven't forgotten them, though, and here's a collection of their studio recordings ready to be discovered by fresh ears. The quartet barely look old enough to shave on the front cover, but the music they're playing still seems fully formed, a high energy mixture of Damned crunch and Big Star power-pop that with the benefit of hindsight seems like a precursor to unpolished power-pop bands like The Replacements.
Some of the lyrics are surprisingly wry and sharp for their young age. "I want you, in a residential area/I want you, with existential love", they sneer in 'Residential Area', and 'Hardcore Punk' (not a hardcore song in the slightest, incidentally...in fact didn't hardcore only properly begin in '81? This song's from 1980) has them ganging up to assert that they're "always gonna a fight and wanna prove I'm right" in true singalong style. This is not dangerous-sounding music, though, more a sideways glance the youth subcultures of their time.
We also get the likes of 'Radical Attitude' ("I'm the guy that you don't like, I'm the guy you'd like to knife/'cause I'm the guy who wears the long hair with the radical attitude") and 'The Stare' ("If you look at me like I'm kinda strange/I'll just give you the stare"). It's pop anthems with a punky edge made for disenfranchised teenagers of the '70s, and it still sounds pretty catchy and clever now.
YOUR RECENTLY VIEWED ITEMS
- You're Not Gonna Get It (1978-81) by Epicycle
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