Springbok Nude Girls’ Partypocalypse strikes a balance between the conventional and unconventional while continually maintaining interest and excitement.
The opening two tracks, “Emerging Submarines” and “Best Friends, Best Enemies”, exude some of the best writing, production, and arrangement on an SA rock record that I’ve heard. The impossibly infectious beat of the opening track adds to its revolutionary bent while the marriage of dance and grunge gives the whole thing a menacing bite.
The latter of the two brings with it a dash of industrial-fuelled intensity that lasts throughout, as it rips open the narcissistic undertones that run through so many social circles – although rather than aggression there’s a sense of calm and self-assured confidence that makes things feel that much more dynamic.
That’s not to say the rest of the album isn’t up to scratch. The tracks that follow find a wonderful balance between boundary-pushers like the psychedelic, reggae-tinged “Cataonic” and the foot-stomping ode to escapism that is “Call Me Zombie” – as well as the more conventional, sentimental numbers like the softly hopeful “Flashlight” and the existentially fraught “Beautiful Evolution”.
With the ebb and flow between conventional and experimental, Partypocalypse keeps the waters moving and even the toned down tracks are wrapped up in intricate and intelligent song writing.
The scene is much-changed since Springbok Nude Girls crashed onto it in the ’90s, but they’re still a potent voice in hard rock, and with this being their last studio album with the original band line-up, this kind of magic on a record should be revelled in.