Thirty seconds into “Thunder Queens Theme”, the opening track of the Thunder Queens EP, you know that what comes next is going to be good. As dissonant screams and ominous clanging and banging give way to the simple one-two-punch of guitar and drum, London, ON-based duo Thunder Queens lay out a statement of intent by repeating little more than their band name. There’s no time to catch your breath before Lola Hayman and Violet Bruneel blast right into “Stereo Cat” and “And Then We Go”, the former a Ramonesesque banger, the latter an equally brief interlude that’s anything but a musical stop-gap.
Things get sludgy by the time “Bulldozer” starts tearing up your eardrums with its soupy combination of slacker-rock vibe and punk sonic assault. Thunder Queens’ storm doesn’t subside until “Tornado Warning” takes its last spin around a slow but hard-hitting riff that picks up intensity (and velocity) the more it moves. They scream/sing “Nothing / Nothing at all,” but there’s certainly something to Thunder Queens that makes this tidy and tight five-song EP so compelling and catchy.
Did I mention that Hayman and Bruneel’s collective age is 21? That fact is just further proof (as if we really need it) that Henry Rollins was right: “Where there is young people and vitality, you’re going to find punk rock.”
Clara Engel Where a City Once Drowned: The Bethlehem Tapes Vol. II