Words: James Frostick
Band image: Emily Herbert
Melbourne’s The Faculty are back with news of a new EP in the chamber. Before pulling back the hammer and unloading Here’s To Fun’s eight tracks of wild punk rock, they’re starting with a warning shot in the form of new single ‘Chrissy Moltisanti’ – a zippy number touching on those that place a higher importance on their own social standing than their relationships.
Those that know anything about Australia’s percolating punk scene know that The Faculty are the goods. The band’s 2018 cracker of a cassette debut contained four tracks of sharp-angled and tightly coiled punk riffage, knotted breakdowns and a rich vocal delivery that showcased a distinct musical identity – one that immediately set them apart from their contemporaries. The five-piece have a new cassette EP in the can that’s full of heaters, but before they drop the complete edition on our heads The Faculty are offering a taster with lead cut ‘Chrissy Moltisanti’. Yes, those of you familiar with HBO mafia epic The Sopranos will be familiar with the track’s namesake, but this ain’t some sort of ode to crime TV. The inspirations for this one hit a bit closer to home.
To a backing of pummelling revved-up chug and wiry frenzied guitar needling, vocalist Maquarie Fletcher fires off lines laced with a contemptuous sneer. Take this line for a start: “You wanna be a made man? You wanna be a main man?” The derision here is palpable – sarcasm drips off every syllable. Although Maq’s lines might read like snappy non sequiturs on paper, you get a sense that there’s a person on the receiving end of this spray – someone caught up cultivating their image at the expense of others. You know the kind: a person aspiring to amass social clout and is focused solely on the ladder and not those they’ve stepped on to reach the next rung. There’s even allusions to the destruction of a relationship caused by this selfishness (“You had all the riches in the world but you chose to break the bank“) and how one can don a public-facing mask in an attempt to shroud their intentions (“I’m faithful, I’m steady“). Chrissy Moltisanti was a coward and got what was coming to him in The Sopranos. I wouldn’t want to be in the crosshairs of The Faculty when they’re locked and loaded like this. The Faculty excels at crafting leather-clad street rock with street smarts. Get on board or get out of the way.
As with all releases due during the pandemic, the exact date of Here’s To Fun’s arrival is uncertain. For now, pencil in a tentative May or June release – pre-orders can be made here.