‘This Band Is Sick’ - Steve White and The Protest Family - ‘folk punk without a safety net’(October 25, 2014)
‘This Band Is Sick’ - an album with all the delicacy of a cornered rat coupled with the fearsome bite of a rabid hyena. Steve White and The Protest Family deliver songs overflowing with acidic political and social comment, uncontained aggression on a wave of vituperation, and as much foul language as you could want. This is folk punk without a safety net. However, this is not simply ranting. It’s raw music wrapped around primal lyrics that range from visceral to painful, delivered without embellishment or restraint - and it undeniably makes a point.
The cry of “No pasarán” used by British anti-fascists during the October 1936 Battle of Cable Street becomes‘No Pasaran in E17’ to recall the September 2012 EDL march in Walthamstow when local people opposed them in no uncertain terms. ‘This Band Is Sick’offers more than a few truths that our leaders might do well not to ignore, from a shout to ‘Do Something About It’ and stop sitting on your arse complaining, through ‘Home Rule For Awesomestow’ raging against the progression of expensive white middle-class commuter land, to‘Smash It Up (And Start Again)’ wanting a worthier world free of corporate and political corruption.
The deep-feelings that generate these songs also move into personal and human counsel, such as examining the serialisation of grief perpertrated by professional lie-mongers at a certain newspaper in‘Ecstasy Death Girl’, and the need to be aware of yourself with ‘Never Mind Your Bollocks’ as male self-examination is more than a quick grab of the testicles, and as you would expect a reference to flawed classification with ‘(When An) Anarchist (Helps You Cross The Road)’.
Steve White and The Protest Family - obvious atavistic attitude, protest with a point. This doesn’t push it shoves.
Reviewer: Charlie Elland