Sound Advice: Iron Chic with Propagandhi and La Armada (March 7)

Melodic N.Y. Punk band comes to Southgate House Revival

click to enlarge Iron Chic - PHOTO: NICOLE GUGLIELMO
Photo: Nicole Guglielmo
Iron Chic
Iron Chic’s technically a Pop Punk band, but it’d be doing the Long Island, NY quintet a disservice to box the group into a genre that evokes teenage romanticism and sloppily-played blast beats. While its scuzzy songcraft packs enough gruff melodicism and hooks to flesh out at least a pair of mid-’90s Fat Wreck Chords LPs, the band boldly goes beyond scene conventions. Its latest full-length release, You Can’t Stay Here, falls just shy of Shoegaze, lavishing reverb on distorted power chords that prop-up anthemic hooks. It’s like early Blink-182 with Japandroids’ impassioned delivery or Built To Spill with a streamlined sound that could’ve made mainstream waves at the turn of the millennium.

The new record’s lyrics provide an even greater sense of gravitas. Released just over a year after the death of the group’s former guitarist Rob McAllister, You Can’t Stay Here explores Iron Chic’s existential side.

On “Invisible Ink,” a cut built upon blistering lead guitars and a snare drum that could lead a parade’s march, frontman Jason Lubrano reflects on his brush with mortality, singing “Death’s sweet kiss was a bullet that missed us,” while treading the fine line between sincerity and theatrical emotion.

Iron Chic’s output can be gloomy, but it’s still hard-hitting and shimmery enough to feel cathartic. Their music is an act of exorcism, driving out demons with stadium-sized solos. It’s mosh-worthy, if you’re the type to get introspective in the pit.

“I know I have a tendency to write depressing lyrics, so I usually do make a conscious effort to make a note of optimism to counteract it,” Lubrano told Riot Fest in 2017.

This year is Iron Chic’s 10th one together. The band is commemorating its newfound veteran status on tour with Propagandhi — another band with a pun-centric name, whose seminal 1993 debut, How To Clean Everything, helped lay the groundwork for the next 25 years of Pop Punk production.


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