Mix in the late-mid period Clash (say London Calling to side four of Sandinista), after the lit dynamite of Give ‘Em Enough Rope and before the disco assrash of ninety percent of Combat Rock. (Don’t even get me started with Cut the Crap.) Mix in some of the more subtle Echo and the Bunnymen (almost subliminally), some reggae (which fits back into the period of the Clash), and you know what? This is more than just entirely listenable. It’s music that’s great to work along to; plop it on and it put a bounce in my step and a bob in my head. When the Ratchets are playing, it doesn’t demand all of your attention, it’s not embarrassing to listen to (to you or them; they wear their age well), and it’s comforting. And that’s not a slag in anyway, because what could be more blue collar, working class “street punk” than having great tunes playing when you’re forced to swing a hammer or humping a photocopier? Nice.
–todd (Pirates Press)