The female/male band play a loud brand of music that combines the oomph of hard rock with enough power pop flair to keep things interesting.
The album opener, "Sneakers", sets the tone for the vocals on the record. Singer Michelle Owen's delivery is a nasal snarl, which works well with the often bitter, biting lyrics (particularly on a track like "Heartbreaker"). It all comes together for a '90s Letters To Cleo type sound.
For the most part however, there aren't a lot of bells and whistles on The Hammer Antics. "Courtney Love" is a grinding guitar rock tune. Wrapping things up is "Monster", a track that's aggressive and not at all fancy.
While The Hammer Antics' sound may not be completely original, they are playing a style of music that precious few other bands are tackling nowadays. The courage to do their own thing makes even an older sound come across as refreshing.
The Hammer Antics play Lee's Palace in Toronto on May 18th.
Best tracks: "Sneakers", "Monster"
Track listing for The Hammer Antics:
- Courtney Love
- Kiss of Death
- Gold Chain