A great punk demo can really feel both like a riveting mission assertion or the fuck-around doodles of some booger making an attempt to make their pals chortle. Kel Mason’s first bedroom-recorded outing as Gee Tee, in 2016, was the latter: a set of goofy, sample-heavy punk songs about automobiles, flame decals, and driving too quick. This balaclava-wearing weirdo from Gold Coast, Australia named his undertaking after a Rat Fink-adjacent muscle automotive illustration, and he rode the gimmick to a wonderful 2018 self-titled album. In that underheralded lo-fi power-pop assortment, earworm synth melodies and belligerent energy chords showcased a songwriting expertise able to extra than simply simple punchlines. It seems a tune about loitering on the fuel station might be humorous and a banger.
Goodnight Neanderthal is a long-awaited follow-up for individuals who eagerly scooped up the final half decade of Mason’s prolific 7″ drops, compilation spots, and Bandcamp loosies. Regardless of laboring over this assortment of filthy bubblegum scuzz for the final two years, the Sydney-based punk in the end settled on simply 10 songs totaling 18 minutes of fabric. With a full band and the backing of the commemorated garage-rock heads at Goner Data, he didn’t need any duds on this one. (“I get really picky about what I release,” he stated of the album. “If I don’t think it rocks, I don’t see the point in putting it out.”) Two months earlier than Mason despatched it off to Memphis, he shortly wrote and recorded the vast majority of the album’s songs, scrapping a lot of what he’d executed within the months prior. Goodnight Neanderthal bottles the vitality of that spontaneous burst of creativity. True to his mission, the brand new album has no skips.
Whereas Gee Tee is now not outlined by its early motorhead caricatures, Mason leans closely into the undertaking’s storied playfulness. The album’s title monitor is outlined by a giant gaudy keyboard melody oozing Technicolor pleasure, which is counterbalanced by a bunch of tough-guy shit. Fuzz-caked energy chords chug alongside whereas Mason sings from his intestine about how he simply acquired bonked over the top by a giant membership. His resilience to blunt-force trauma isn’t his solely cartoonish trait; Mason faucets into quite a lot of exaggerated voices, lending every tune a definite vibe. He’s a nasal brat on “Bad Egg,” questioning over a killer rapid-fire guitar hook a couple of nasty scent within the kitchen. (Spoiler: It’s you—you’re the dangerous egg!) He’s a goblin with vocal fry on the burly “Heart Throb,” insisting which you can’t get sufficient of him even when this piece of shit muffins his hair in grime and grease.