I’ve always loved trash-punk. (I always resist terms like “grindcore”, given the tendecy too many of that genre have towards bombast.)

Very few records or bands measure up to the requisite blend of speed, brevity, chaos and silliness.

For much of my life, in that genre, one song reigned supreme, for me; namely 1985’s Wipe-out” by The Stupids.

2021’s “I am not a machine”, a song by South Korean band, the Drinking Boys and Girls Choir, has a similar spirit. Both songs featured here.

But Melt-Banana, formed nearly 30 years ago in Tokyo, are worthy long-term exemplars of the genre.

Their devotion to sonic chaos over such a lengthy period is particularly laudable. Musical respectability soon sets in with even the most initially-spirited bands, with all its fellow-travellers, namely lack of pace, loss of mischief, and encroaching embourgeoisement.

Melt-Banana though, in 2022, they still play and sing as if the stage was on fire.

Here’s their 2019 cover of The Damned‘s 1977 song, “Neat Neat Neat“:

Rarely has a cover been more true to the spirit of the original.

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