Let’s face it, you need an appreciation irony when listening to a new album by a punk band these days. The heyday of punk was a long time ago and, while retro is always where it is at in the here and now, there was never really anything about pure punk that could be commercialised and used for the sponsorship of electric cars. It is, therefore, all the more commendable that ghosts from the past like Airdrie’s Reaction still have it in them to kick up a storm with their new album “Keep It Weird, Keep It Wired”.
The passing of time hasn’t dulled their energy or enthusiasm for the task in hand and “Valerie Solanas and Me” and “Dreams are Free” make fine examples of keeping the spirit of punk alive. That very same passing of time has, however, added a degree of sentimentality – listen to “Saints of Tamla Hill” and “Days of El Dorado” in particular - to the proceedings but that never, ever, exceeds the impact of the roughhouse guitars and pounding drums that drive these songs onwards.
The irony? Think about it. Punk was the last voice of youth in rebellion and now it is pretty much the only musical outlet for protest these days and it is now in the hands of old men. That said, one day, we will all be old men and it is to be hoped that we can all keep it as loud and true as Reaction can.