If you want to buy this album (pay what you can), head on over to The Rebel Spell's bandcamp page!
It’s A Beautiful Future is the latest sarcastically titled album from Vancouver, BC punks the Rebel Spell and it packs a hell of a punch. Carried by a driving rhythm section, It’s A Beautiful Future is nearly unmatched in its enthusiasm and execution. The lyrics are passionately political, but never preachy or pretentious, but if you’re a “the medium is the message” listener, the songwriting is outstanding, making it easy to put the politics in the backseat. It’s A Beautiful Future never stagnates and that’s partly because songs like “Uncontrollable” and “It Can’t Just Be Me,” which feature violin and piano, respectively, work to keep things different and interesting. It’s A Beautiful Future is punk at its most coherent. Whether you’re protesting or skateboarding, or skateboarding to protest, the album is uncompromising and the strongest Canadian punk album since Supporting Caste, which is no small feat for a band that clearly wear Propagandhi’s influence on their sleeves. Our political future may be bleak, but with bands like the Rebel Spell, punk rock’s certainly isn’t.
- Exclaim (Tyler Munro)
These young but well-established veterans of the Canadian punk scene have pulled off a neat trick with their latest release, managing to capture the passion at the heart of our culture and condense it into 12 tracks and 30-something minutes of life-enhancing music. Packed with more energy than a vegan's farts, the band blast their way through the walls of oppression with their sounds of inspiration. There's some pretty clever verbal dissection of the multitude of problems that face people around the world but this only serves to reinforce the common ground - we're all victims of the colonialist mindset of the ruling elites, whether it's done by invading armies or imposed by our own home-grown governments and their all-seeing eyes. The Rebel Spell do a damned fine job of shining a light into the dark shadows of the fortresses of the power-crazed, exposing them for the cockroaches they really are. Their ability to lay bare the fetid corpse of capitalism is only matched by their desire to get us all to connect the dots and stand shoulder-to-shoulder against the common enemy. The inclusion of radical folk singer Leon Rosselson's 'The World Turned Upside Down' at the very end of the disc is a fitting climax to all that precedes it, the band infusing it with their own unique passion. I'd go as far as to say it's destined to become many people's favourite version of this well-loved tune. It's really well-balanced when it comes to the musical foundations, perfectly in keeping with the lyrical finesse laid over the top. The bass player double-picks riffs at a speed that suggests he must have some hummingbird genes in his arms, the guitar and vocals dance with the passion of lifelong lovers, while beats are of the solid and hearty variety needed to pull and hold this potent force together. There's nothing too fancy here, just smart and sharp use of whatever's within arm's and tongue's reach to make a clear and concise point. The Rebel Spell are the essence of political punk rock, and it doesn't hurt to be reminded once in a while what a great smell that is. For people who also like: Dropkick Murphys, The Restarts, the first Propagandhi LP OP's opinion: 4.5/5
- Old Punks Never Die
This is the first new release from the Rebel Spell in a couple of years, and they do not disappoint, right out of the starting gate, the title track is amazing. They return with the upbeat punk, insightful leftist lyrics, and the melody we have come to love them for. The first two tracks are catchier than anything I have heard in a long time, they instantly grab you, both musically and lyrically. “It doesn’t get any safer than 10 million cops, helicopters up high, and police dogs, “ That is a prime example of the lyrical content and cleverness of this record, and one of my favourite lines I have heard in quite a while I must say. The album not only features the wonderful catchy-yet-not-too-poppy punk we have come to expect from the Rebel Spell, but it also features piano being used extensively through “It Can’t Be Just Me” and violin on “Uncontrollable”. The album even ends with a cover of a peaceful acoustic protest song by Leon Rosselson, “The World Turned Upside Down”. It is these subtle changes and nuances that help to keep the Rebel Spell’s sound progressing as they continue to deliver their increasingly important message.
- Absolute Underground
released August 10, 2014