Punk music's evolved into many shapes and sub-genres over the years. From its snarling, wide-eyed British inception in the late 70s, we've witnessed the advent of everything from peace punk to punk pathetique, street punk, Taqwacore and beyond. But the last five years have seen a particular renaissance in British punk, with a new wave of artists emerging from the Isles to usher the genre forward.
Blackpool five-piece Boston Manor are one such band. Cherry-picking the best of Californian pop-punk and European melodic punk, they focus their music around unmistakably British themes. With upcoming album Welcome To The Neighbourhood, the band paint a sharp picture of working class Britain with their dystopian depiction of the UK's forgotten towns.
To celebrate the release of their new album and the scene it's a part of, vocalist Henry Cox joins us to provide us with an essential guide to the best British punk albums released over the last five years.
Apologies, I Have None - Pharmacie (2016)
“One of my favourite UK bands of all time, this is a swirling, hellish whirlpool which delves into the blight of mental health and how love might just be the only cure. I was a massive fan of the EP All Black Everything, which was my introduction to the band, and I haven’t stopped listening to this album since. Special mention goes to the track Crooked Teeth, a beautifully penned song about addiction and the societal pressures we face from birth to death: ‘Teach your sons to be aggressive, daughters to give in/and a real man never backs down, he keeps his fears close to his chest.’”
Gnarwolves - Chronicles Of Gnarnia (2014)
“This is a compilation album of the first three EPs – Fun Club, CRU and Funemployed – by Cornish three-piece skate punk band Gnarwolves. This band exploded out of nowhere; when Boston Manor first formed we would go to tons of their shows and remember just how nuts the energy was, it was really raw and visceral. The band played main stage at Reading and Leeds, and rocked up with borrowed guitars and a couple of beat up combo amps.”
Bastions - Hospital Corners (2011)
“This is kind of cheating cause it came out in 2011. But Hospital Corners is one of my favourite UK punk/hardcore records of all time. The band were from the island of Anglesea just off the coast of Wales and wrote a record that captures that windswept grey-skied isolation that comes with living there. Check out the track The Lengths (When Wants Become Needs) which features Frank Carter. The end has a sample of a message left on vocalist Jamie Berne’s answering machine. Super creepy shit.”
Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes - Modern Ruin (2017)
“One of the last true rockstars in my opinion. I’m dubious as to whether to class this as a punk album, but who cares? It’s so bluesy, the guitar tones are just groovy as fuck and his vocal delivery is top notch. That being said, there’s still some really heavy moments on this record that I love. If you haven’t been living under a rock this past five years you’ve almost definitely listened to this record, so I don’t really need to elaborate.”
SLAVES - Are You Satisfied? (2015)
“They’re a two piece and they’re loads of fun. SLAVES are about as punk as it gets and they’ve somehow dominated the mainstream; they’ve done collabs with reggae, grime and ska artists and their shows are rowdy as hell. I have to admit I haven’t listened to any of their albums after this one, but Where’s Your Car Debbie? Is an absolute anthem so it’s going on the list.”
Boston Manor's new album, Welcome To The Neighbourhood, is released on September 07 via Pure Noise Records. Check out new single Bad Machine below.