Booji Boys are Canada’s most exciting new punk band.
I love the idea of early 80s punk and hardcore. And I think if I had been there I would love a lot of it outright. To see it live and in person would have been a revelation. To hear it on record… well, more often than not it’s underwhelming, if not, hard to listen to. There are a few exceptions, of course. Hüsker Dü and Bad Brains come to mind, two bands that were so vital, energetic and energized on youth and rage that they didn’t need to have their music sound anywhere close to pristine to have that feeling come through on their albums.
Booji Boys have that energy, and they have harnessed it brilliantly on their second LP of 2017, Weekend Rocker. Now, if you’re like me in regards to your inability to dive deep into music that sounds like it should exclusively be played in places that smell like sweat, piss, alienation or some combination of the three, I’ve constructed a three-question survey that should give you a better idea about whether Booji Boys are for you.
The first question you need to ask yourself before you commit to listening to the pride of the Halifax punks is: Just how pissed off am I? If your answer ranges from “very fuckin pissed off” to “fairly fuckin pissed off” then it is likely Booji Boys will fit nicely into your daily life. You won’t need to understand what front person Alex Mitchell is saying because you know he’s pissed, so are you and you can relate.
Second, do I hate Christmas? This is a bit of a trick question. I don’t hate Christmas exactly. But I do find it a bit weird. I’m not religious, so the whole thing feels pretty random to me. The capitalism of Christmas makes me wanna puke. But hey, a little break in routine, seeing friends and family, is all good stuff, especially during what would otherwise be the absolute most depressing time of the year. Look, the nuance of your answer isn’t what matters here. If you think Christmas is an arbitrary excuse to buy shit and you aren’t taken with the whole Jesus thing, you can find comfort in knowing Booji Boy don’t give a fuck about Christmas. What’s a bigger middle finger to the man than releasing your album on Christmas? There isn’t one.
The last question deals with why you listen to music. Is it a distraction? For intellectual purposes? To get closer to actual beauty in this ugly-ass world? Wait, that’s three questions, but not the question. That would be: Do I need some relief? If your answer is “hell fuckin’ yeah I need some relief” then Weekend Rocker is your medicine. It’s fun enough to make you smile, fast enough get your motor runnin’, pissed enough do make you punch the air (if that’s a thing you do), short enough that you can get lost in it for the duration, snap back to reality and still have time to do whatever shit you’ve gotta do.
Booji Boys are Canada’s most exciting new punk band at a time when more and more people need the ferocity and catharsis of speed-punks past. Most people I know would take the above questions and answer yes to at least two of them. I would guess lots of people still like Christmas. Me, I wanna hock a loogie at Santa and ask why satisfaction never showed up in my damn stocking. Christmas only lasts a day, Booji Boys are forever.