Under Review

Bankrobber

Life’s Nutso   (Independent)

Review by Josefa Cameron


Jordan Minkoff (Wetface, Slam Dunk), Tanner Matt (Mood Hut), and Aden Collinge (Babysitter) make up Bankrobber, a three-piece group who put together their junior full-length at the Noise Floor with Jordan Koop about a year ago. Life’s Nutso, released early August, is a delicious array of dark, silken Nicky Thomas vocals, moody energy, and suspenseful guitar flings.

“Boym’n” initiates the seven-track album with a tonic bang. Dirty guitar, brazen vocals, and powerful drums like that of Gary Powell hit hard and plunge through the track. The sound resembles a more upbeat Night Beats with obvious hints of Minkoff’s main project, Slam Dunk.

Equally as bubbly, “Soon” comes next. Minkoff sings with such vitality, you feel as if you are watching the band jump around live. You can almost see the guitar-fuzzed air and smell the drum roll sweat.

“JD,” their single (also found on the Vancouver Pop Alliance compilation), is a masterpiece. Tribal rhythm, gypsy- esque horns, and fiddle pound through the speakers accompanied by Joe Strummer-style wails and yells.

The track spins into a correspondingly fervent “Tanner’s Tower,” my personal favourite. The guitar riffs bleed into the ghostly vocal notes with deep tom drumbeats, making for a haunting but heartwarming piece.

The diversity of the album makes it hard to determine where the sound fits; it’s far from any cookie-cutter genre. It’s smoother than garage rock, sassier than alt, and cooler than pop. I’d coin it nomad wave or, perhaps, nothing other than really, really good.

A groovy bass line like that of Babyshambles’ “French Dog Blues” begins a beachy, fresh “Bankrobber.” The track picks up the beat with airy guitar hurls, catchy beats, and soft, melodic vocals. The band throws down a folky, orchestral piece in “Aden’s Song.” The celtic violin and danceable beat makes for a perfect late-summer’s sunset jingle.

“The End” wraps up the list with Minkoff’s humming and speedy instruments. The song reminds me of a less chilled out “What Do I Want To Be When I Grow Up” by Fthrsn.

If you want to take my full advice, either buy Life’s Nutso on tape when it comes out next month, download it now, or both. Oh and don’t miss their shows, which are always a good time.