It’s good to know the flame hasn’t died for one of punks loudest voices, Rancid. From the outset, Trouble Maker is exactly what you expect from this mighty band – raw, loud familiar. Since they formed in 1991, Rancid have managed to retain the same sound without becoming stale. Punk is by its very definition a rebellious sound, which Rancid have plenty of, and these days call for a clear voice of revolution as much as the early days of the genre.
Trouble Maker does not disappoint. The title track is the shout-along anthem you’ve come to expect, Lars Frederiksen belting out lyrics that sound so familiar, despite being a new song.
As well as the angry punk themes, there’s a touch of the ska influence and rock & roll infused in there too. You could argue that the band haven’t moved on in the last quarter of the century, but why should they? Their style is solid and as relevant today as it ever was. Rancid aren’t just a definiton for a time, but also a place, that feeling of frustration matched with the ‘fuck it’ attitude synonymous with the punk movement. These boys are refusing to age with grace, and we celebrate them for it
If you’re expecting the band to have reinvented themselves, you will be sorely disappointed. But if you’re looking for a damn good album, familiar sounds, meaningful lyrics with a sense of fun, Trouble Maker is well worth diving into. If the title of the last track ‘This is not the end’ is anything to go by, they’re not going to fade out any time soon!