EP REVIEW: Okay Dane – Alienation

Words by Carly Gibbs

Melbourne’s slacker punks, Okay Dane, are busting through the front door and commandeering the stereo with their debut EP – ‘Alienation’.  With punchy riffs, clean but grungy vocals and some seriously catchy hooks, this is a feisty little number that is right up my alley. 

The EP starts out with the track, You’re Sick which comes out swinging with its bouncy, up tempo take on being “stuck on self-destruct” and “impulsive behaviour” that anyone who’s had one too many heavy weekends (and possibly week days) can wholly relate to.  “You’re sick, but I’m sicker” comes the chorus with a challenge to see who can be the one “who gets there quicker”.  Party vibes with a side of self-awareness is my kind of party. 

You’re Sick is followed up by Stupid Game which has way more of a grunge tone to it feeling simultaneously new and exciting but reminiscent of the golden era that was the 90’s.  The guitars are deeper, fuller and grubbier and invoke a melancholy that screams heartbreak.  I can see an 18-year-old me sitting in my parked car singing along to this, hair hanging over my eyes, contemplating a dead end and failing relationship.  Possibly revealing more about my own past than anything else!  Apart from those depressing scenes I’ve just painted, this track still bumps. 

Next comes God Complex.  This track was released as a single earlier in the year and is one of their most well known tracks on the EP.  It follows in the same vein as Stupid Game with lyrics that speak of the breakdown of a relationship but feels little lighter with some gratuitous “woo oo oo’s” in there for good measure.  An absolute belter of a chorus which propels me to want to shout it loud and jump about my lounge room in a one person cyclonic mosh.  Much to the disgust of my elderly neighbours, no doubt! 

Shifting gears with the newest single to be released from this EP, is Headache.  At first run through this was my favourite track and is instantly likeable.   Fast, anthemic and ready to whip a crowd into a frenzy, it makes you envisage a writhing, sweaty mosh pit filled with smiling faces screaming along to “be someone else’s headache, my God, you’re such a fuckface” and “I’m not ruthless you’re just stupid”.  This is what festival dreams are made of!   They’ve also recently released a video for this track and it’s a real good time.  Set in a children’s television show studio, the clip starts with an awkward host who is trying to coax ‘Willy the Worm’ from a cardboard apple to entertain his young viewers.  This sounds all kinds of wrong but luckily the boys from Okay Dane are here to save those precious, innocent minds as they eject the host and crew from the set and proceed to rock out and wreck the joint in true, rowdy, punk rock style.  Take a look here –

Whilst you are there you should also check out their other clip for Pretend which was released separately to this current EP.

The last track on the EP, but by no means the least, is Weak.  This is my definite favourite of the bunch.  Spacious and moody, the simplicity of the melody gives the vocals life and creates a depth that makes me feel things that I didn’t think I was going to feel when I first read “Slacker Punk” in the description.  I really love this track!

Recording ‘Alienation’ at Melbourne’s Homesurgery Recordings with Jon Grace (Dear Seattle, Kingswood) and mastered by Sam K Sproull has provided them with the goods like so many before them.  All in all, there is not on a song on here that I can fault.  With every play through I get more and more sucked in and interested in seeing where this band will go next.  If Violent Soho, DZ Deathrays or The Smith Street Band are your thing then you need to give Okay Dane a listen asap!  This is just the beginning for Okay Dane and I’m guessing you’ll be seeing a lot more of them in the future. 

Check out ‘Alienation’ HERE

Follow Okay Dane on Facebook HERE

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