It’s been a long six years, but A Wilhelm Scream’s new LP is out, and on their terms.
Partycrasher is packed with punk rock anthems and playing that raises the bar in the genre. It’s worth the wait—recorded and funded by the band and released on Gainesville’s No Idea Records.
The record’s been out for two weeks now, making its debut at The Fest in Florida, which bassist Brian Robinson played while touring with Streetlight Manifesto—who just finished a year of shows before going on hiatus.
“It was a very fast four days of my life. I literally got off stage with Streetlight, went straight to the airport and flew to Tampa for pre-Fest. I picked up my four string for the first time—and it felt so weird,” said Robinson.
“But one song into the Wilhelm set and I was back in that mode.”
Filling in on bass for Streetlight Manifesto is not an easy feat. Their signature ska/punk sound rivals the intensity of A Wilhelm Scream—a four-piece horn section is featured in place of distorted guitar leads.
It also meant rocking a five-string and an electric upright—an instrument Robinson hadn’t touched in five years and had “about a night and a day to figure it out.”
With Robinson’s chops and the fact that the two bands have a history as tour mates, the sub-in makes sense. A Wilhelm Scream’s decidedly DIY work method may also come from knowing Streetlight’s situation. The ska staple’s battle with Victory Records ended with the band not being legally able to release their last record.
Partycrasher is a furious album well worth the wait—the production value leaps and bounds ahead of their 2009 self-titled EP, also recorded by guitarists Trevor J. Reilly and Mike Supina in Reilly’s parent’s house in New Bedford, Massachusetts.
“We renovated the shit out of it before recording Partycrasher,” said Robinson.
“We wanted the record to sound on par with something out of the Blasting Room. We started without any label support, so we were basically touring to fund the gear to make the record sound the best it could.
“Why it took so long is because we didn’t make money. We had to go on the road as much as possible. It was too long, there won’t be such a long gap now that we know we can make such a great-sounding record with the gear that we have,” he continued.
A Wilhelm Scream’s last LP Career Suicide came out in 2007, towards the end of Robinson’s first year with the band, and the band’s lineup has been constant since 2008, with the addition of Supina.
The only pre-Supina track on Partycrasher is “Gut Sick Companion,” which Robinson says was made infinitely better with Supina’s riffage.
Partycrasher flips from sing-along choruses to heavy shredding—album-opener “Boat Builders” is something of a pop-punk primer before things get heavier later on.
Robinson says it’s a trend that’s bound to continue with the band getting older.
“We’re not as angry as we used to be. We’re still pretty angry, but we’re not as angry,” he laughs.
“We always get grouped in as melodic hardcore. I would say Career Suicide was pretty hardcore, and Partycrasher is more melodic.”
Now on tour supporting the new record, they’re already thinking ahead to the next one.
“There is a song called ‘Partycrasher’ that didn’t go on the record. And that’s the first step into the next record,” said Robinson, adding that the band will start developing the new LP next year.
With their own studio, a killer new album and love of touring the world, all the hard work is paying off.
“The guys in my band have become absolutely the best friends I’ve ever had,” said Robinson.
“We still get along as well as when I first joined the band, which is a good thing."
Originally published by The Link Newspaper.