Reviewed by Henry Raby
I remember once, a few years ago, mentioning to someone one of my favourite types of music was acoustic punk. They were taken aback at the thought such a concept could exist. Certainly, most people’s perception of punk involves loud, fast and noisy electric guitars. Here, Stoj Snak proves punk can be loud, fast, noisy and acoustic.
Hailing from Denmark, Stoj Snak means ‘Noise Talk’, a perfect way to summarise this acoustic music. Stoj has the pace and passion of a whole riotous punk band, filtered into a traditional folk style. Folk is an evolving genre, and the 21st century generation of folk-punk musicians stay true to that honest, story-telling approach to acoustic music of Woody Guthrie, Bob Dylan and Phil Ochs (that’s the talk part). Great Ideas Need Landing Ground has a lovely folk swing, almost sweet in the upbeat and positive chorus of “it’s gonna be better for everyone”.
The other part is the noise. Collateral Damage starts off the EP in a bit way with the gutsy blues harmonica signalling like a pummelling train heading for your ears. Party on the Hillside has that screech of early Against Me!, a song which scrapes on the vocal chords like the drinking glass alongside the booze. State of Mine is a finely tuned protest song,
Stoj is probably more akin to the American side to folk-punk, elements of Mischief Brew in his sharp song-writing, and the effective punch of Wingnut Dishwater’s Union echoes on No Refunds. But Stoj is Danish, and his voice has that distinctive punk bite fused with, at times, charming lyrics which leave for a decent addition to any folk-punk playlist. Sometimes, acoustic punk can become messy and inaccessible, but here Stoj Snak regains that well-crafted and addictive core.