DESTRUCTORS: Exercise the Demons of Youth; Punk Singles Collection: CD

The Destructors dealt in rudimentary, quick-paced 1-2-1-2 punk, not unlike so many other bands coming from the U.K. during the late ‘70s/early ‘80s. This is not necessarily a bad thing, and as evidenced by Exercise the Demons of Youth, their debut, they were quite proficient at knocking out a solid eighteen tunes of the stuff (some of which, including “Northern Ripper” and “Breakdown,” were previously recorded and released under the name The Blanks back in 1978 or so), delivering some solid tracks rife with social commentary and serial killer stories. It serves as a nice time capsule of that period in U.K. punk when things were still quite simple, passionate, and open to anyone with enough conviction and balls to get up on a stage and rant a bit while a tight band thrashed away behind ‘em. The singles collection starts off in the same vein, with their early singles charting similar territory as Exercise, but somewhere around the middle of the disc things start to change—more interesting drumming patterns emerge here, a little more guitar experimentation there, maybe a few more slower tempos and just when you think they might have “matured” in sound, WHACK, another thrasher. Gotta love that.

 –jimmy (Captain Oi)