“With seclusion comes originality,” asserts Jonathan Coody, guitarist/vocalist of Ninja Gun.
If it’s seclusion you’re looking for, then Valdosta, Ga., isn’t a bad place to start. It’s the city where the Cowpunk foursome formed some eight years ago and has resided ever since.
“I grew up on a hog farm here in South Georgia,” Coody says. “It is a strange story for a group of podunk redneck kids like us to wind up in a Punk Rock band. The reason it does make a good story is because it's unexpected.”
Though his hometown holds few bands, each one’s style is all its own.
“What makes me proud is that there's a lot of originality going on in a small but diverse scene,” Coody says.
As documented ably on last year’s Restless Rubes, Ninja Gun’s second full-length CD on Suburban Home Records, life in Valdosta has shaped Coody’s P.O.V. After some self-reflection, he dubs himself the titular character of “The Last Cowboy” while he follows a Southern couple through relationship troubles in “Front Yard Screamers (Kitchen Kissers).” In numbers like “Red State Blues” and “Darwin Was a Baptist,” he trades personal tales for songs espousing his liberal political perspective.
“When you live somewhere where you don't share the dominant mentality, it could drive you crazy,” the frontman says. “It's like screaming at a wall.”
Aside from a pointed lyrical vision, a skilled sense of musicianship runs through Rubes as Ninja Gun’s sound finds common ground between Punk, AltRock, Indie and Country. Additionally impressive is the disc’s remarkably pristine production, which is the result of a year spent in and out of the studio.
“We decided that we wanted it to be really textured and really well thought out,” Coody adds. “If you want to say something with a song, you better have a good melody to go with it.”
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