Leatherface – The Stormy Petrel

January 01, 1970

(No Idea)






True believers don’t come much truer than
British punks Leatherface. Despite a half-decade break during the last part of
the ‘90s, the band has held fast to their belief that Hüsker Dü pretty much
figured out the best way to make emotionally affective punk rock, and that it
was Leatherface’s job to keep refining that formula. That’s not to say they’re
formulaic, it’s just to say that the burly, chiming guitars, anthemic choruses
and gut-wrenching lyrics just keep getting more.


Stormy Petrel
is the
group’s eighth studio album since 1989, and finds them in prime form, with
Frankie Stubbs’ gravelly voice adding emotional resonance and been-there
weariness to songs that manage to be both raw and well-crafted. To the young
punks who may be unfamiliar with the band’s legacy, Leatherface – especially
Stubbs’ voice – may be reminiscent of Jawbreaker and Hot Water Music, but as
tall as those bands’ legends are, Leatherface has toiled in relative obscurity.
Maybe it’s because their sound is rougher and, frankly, more manly than either
of those bands. Maybe it’s because they’ve got bad luck. Or maybe, they just
don’t give a shit.


In fact, Leatherface recently played in
my town, at a great beer bar that holds about 100 people. I was amazed that a
band I considered so legendary was playing in such a small space and to so few
people. I was even more amazed that they performed with an infectious (and drunkenly
fun) energy that felt like they were playing to an audience ten times as large.
And that’s how it’s always felt with these guys; they’re the band that is
deeply loved by those who love them, and almost completely unknown to those who
have yet to hear them. With The Stormy
a disc that crams the band’s decades of experience into a dozen,
life-affirming punk anthems filled with heartache, hope, and humor, perhaps
more people will get the chance to become members of the former category.



“Diego Garcia,”



Leave a Reply