I was going to start this off with a disclaimer about how The Inner Party isn’t the usual 9B fare but then I realized that I don’t give a damn what the usual 9B fare may or may not be these days and that I have always written about what I love so, fuck a bunch of disclaimers. These kids are probably the most woefully underrated band in Northwest Arkansas these days and that’s a damn shame, I think some it may be due to location but I honestly don’t know much about the music industry and some days I like it that way. What I do know is that Makes A Mess is a fucking great album and you should make an effort to check it out. You see these kids aren’t making Twangy/Folky/Americana records, this is pure post-punk revival with heavy political overtones. The music is heavy and reminiscent, at times, of the likes of Joy Division, Bauhaus, and even Bad Religion. There’s nothing shy about any of these tracks as the band addresses everything from living in debt to loving someone during the zombie apocalypse. And that right there folks is one of this band’s strengths, on serious subjects they take themselves very seriously, even when addressing those issues with snark and a tongue planted firmly in their collective cheek, all while not limiting themselves to being a one trick pony.
I have always loved bass guitar forward records, from Fugazi to Joy Division and everything in between, and the emphasis on that aspect throughout most this album gives it something you don’t feel in music a lot these days. I think that’s what really draws me in to the sound on this one; layer in the drums and other guitar pieces along with the understated vocals and you’ve got yourself 16 dark warm places that are easy slip in to and lose yourself. With sixteen total tracks this is a bit of a monster to tackle so it’s best to dedicate a good chunk of time the first couple of listens so that you can pay attention and catch the little nuances hidden here and there. This is not an album designed for background noise and to be honest there are a couple of tracks I could see my younger self dancing to, you know, back when I could stay up all night partying and be none the worse for wear. I’m sure there are states one could achieve that would turn Makes A Mess in to something even more intense but recommending that sort of thing would be irresponsible so I won’t go there, however I can say that I consider this Essential Listening even if it’s a square peg and you consider 9B a round hole.