Important things to know about the band Civet:
-They're fronted by two ladies, and used to be a band made up of only ladies.
-They're on Hellcat Records, so they probably all have punx tattooed on their knuckles.
-Their van was stolen and became part of a highspeed chase. Seriously, look.
-Their rhythm section left them mid-tour. This has happened to my band before, it's harsh.
-The lead singer/guitarist Liza Graves was on LA Ink. That's really completely not important.
-They just released their new album Love & War, and I'm reviewing it for you.
I listened to just a couple songs of previous releases by them while waiting to get ahold of Love & War, and based on that short experience I was actually expecting to dislike the band. I didn't find it interesting and the vocals weren't doing it for me. The thing is, Love & War completely surprised me. I enjoy the hell out of it, really. It's fucking weird. I like the instrumentals, the vocals, the backup vocals, the lyrics...I could've just said I like everything, I guess. I usually don't like this style of female vocals, like the part of Lori Meyers by Nofx with Kim Shattuck singing. I fucking hate that part. But I happen to really like Liza's vocals, surprisingly.
Love & War is chock full of songs you'll probably love. It's pretty much punk rock n roll at its finest. It's catchy, while also being powerful and fast. You feel as though writing infectious singalongs is something that comes naturally to these girls. I don't know who wrote what on this album, I just know that Liza Graves is the primary songwriter, and that Suzi Homewrecker, guitarist, has been known to write some of their songs.
Songs I recommend are definitely "L.A. Nights", "Come On (I Wanna Be Your Girl)", "Cryin' Wolf" and the title track "Love & War". I like most of the songs on the album, but these are standout tracks in case you need to check out a few before you go all in. There's a lot of variety in these songs, but one thing that rarely varies is the level of intensity and how perfectly recorded this album is. The studio captured it all perfectly. I think "It's the Truth" is my favorite song on the album, if I had to pick one. It's also the second longest track, which makes it weird that it's my favorite. The longest song, "Reap What Your Sow", is also really awesome.
The album closes with one last great song, "You Get What You Pay For". This song reminds me of Rancid, a lot. Of course, I like Liza's voice a whole lot more than I like Armstrong's, so there's that. The backup "woahs" are really pretty on this track, and throughout the earlier songs in the album, too. Civet is a really talented group, and I feel like an idiot for not getting into them way before now. But I can't go back now, I suppose.
This band draws influences from beyond the punk genre, and it's hard to really say what I'd directly compare them to. They bring enough to the table for me to say they have their own sound. I mean, you'll hear familiar shit here to there, but they're not "the female version of blah blah blah" or anything. They're Civet.
You can stream Love & War for free on their facebook page, or you can buy yourself a copy over at interpunk. I wish I could fit in a joke regarding their last song, like, "you get what you pay for!" But I think you get more for your buck than that. Also, you can come poke fun at us over at Idle and the Bear's facebook.