180 OUT – Black & White


Fans of old-school punk rock and hardcore-influenced punk rock have found a lot of quality bands on Thumperpunk Records, so much so that one almost expects any release from the label to be high quality punk rock. Black & White by 180 OUT is one of those albums that just doesn’t fit with the rest of the Thumperpunk Records releases, as it is most definitely not punk rock. In all fairness to the label, Thumperpunk Records mission is to “help artists record, produce, and distribute music that reflects a positive, Christ-centered message, and 180 OUT certainly fits in that mission. There are some punk rock influences, along with other styles, but I feel many punk rock fans will have a hard time finding something here to like.

Currently from San Diego, 180 OUT, describes their sound as a combination of “50’s rockabilly, 60’s surf/punk, 70’s funk, and 80’s rock infused with today’s mall punk sound.” The opening track Lifeguard does have some surf-style guitar in the intro with some beach sounds, and that continues to be an underlying vibe throughout the song, but it seems largely suppressed and in the background to the drums and vocals. This is possibly one of my biggest issues with this release, the influences I would like to hear play a backing role to the drums and vocals, almost like they were not brought to the forefront as that might be too edgy. Every time I think the songs are taking a turn toward an edgier feel, that sound is quickly subdued. Love Speaks Truth starts out with a very promising guitar riff, but then it’s quickly brought under control and the song turns very poppy. My favorite track on the album is My God is Bigger with an intro and guitar line reminiscent of Stevie Ray Vaughn and an old-time Gospel feel to much of the rest of the song.

I do see this album being a safe choice for church youth groups and the song He Wants To Know You would not be out of place as a praise and worship song at a church service. Joe Dukes deserves credit for crafting some catchy songs that lyrically capture a passion for the Gospel, but I struggle with the overall sound of the album as being somewhat like sanitized, parent and church-approved punk/indie rock.

Rating: 3/10

Written by John Jackson

Track Listing:
1. Lifeguard
2. Black & White
3. Big Dollar Man
4. Listen To Me
5. I Don’t Understand
6. He Wants To Know You
7. Love Speaks Truth
8. What if You’re Wrong
9. I Will Wait
10. My God is Bigger

Band Members:
Joe Dukes – vocals, guitar
Grace Dukes – vocals, bass guitar
Spencer Dukes – drums

Weblinks: Facebook / Reverbnation

Record Label: Thumperpunk Records, Oct. 2012


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