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September 2022
Album review

Bob Vylan - Bob Vylan Presents The Price Of Life

‘…Price Of Life’ drills down on what makes Bob Vylan such a visceral and vital force in the punk scene and beyond.
Label: Ghost Theatre Records
Released: 22nd April 2022
Rating: ★★★★★
Bob Vylan - Bob Vylan Presents The Price Of Life
Published: 2:22 pm, May 30, 2022Words: Jamie MacMillan.

Fiercely (and rightfully) proud of their independent status, Bob Vylan are the perfect example of how you can still achieve success without sacrificing or compromising what makes you special in the first place. Debut ‘We Live Here’ was a revelation for those not paying attention, a thrilling collision of grime and punk that burned even brighter in a live setting. Here, they’ve taken that template, tweaked it and perfected it.

‘…Price Of Life’ drills down on what makes them such a visceral and vital force in the punk scene and beyond. A blistering record that tackles inequality, poverty, the real price that the cost of living takes on the majority, racism, and everything else that you’d expect from the duo, it nonetheless plays out in surprising ways at times. Asking whether you’re with “them or us” on ‘Take That’, gammons are poked with wicked grins over a Prodigy-style rave beat. Genres are pivoted between in breathtaking style, moments of ominous grime beats rubbing shoulders against ska and punk on a record where the dots are joined here between a government that seems to welcome sending people to food banks and the impact on the streets, in a land where what the GDP is means precisely nothing to a huge swathe of population that just want to be able to eat.

“Black lives have always mattered” they roar on ‘Pretty Songs’. Bob Vylan are a band that don't sing songs about issues they see in the distance and on TV, they are living the songs that they have, and continue, to experience on a daily basis. That the doors of the industry weren’t opened wide for Bob Vylan, forcing them to kick them down instead is criminal. But it’s still lighting that fire that keeps them this angry and on point. Exceptional.


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