It looks like Angelo Moore's creative resurgence on last year's Brand New Step has carried over to his main drag Fishbone. But the credit isn't Moore's alone, the whole band sounds focused and energized in a way they haven't in years. Norwood Fisher handles the majority of the songwriting duties on Intrinsically Intertwined, and the chemistry between the band members is as strong as ever.
By Nathan Leigh, AFROPUNK Contributor
Banner photo by Steady Jenny
A band is a lot like a relationship. And after 35 years together, Fishbone has figured out that the way to keep it fresh is to focus on what they do best. Fortunately, that's experiment. While all of the songs on Intrinsically Intertwined stay within the band's punk/ska/reggae wheelhouse, they fill the songs with boundary pushing arrangements and dynamic twists and turns. On opener “Unstuck,” the band's harmonies and gang vocals compliment Angelo's contorting lead. It doesn't hurt that this is probably the best song the band's written in years. But you can easily hear the band's directive to “get that gum right off your shoe / pick yourself right out that glue” as a mission statement.
Similarly “Interdependent” may be a song about the way all of us are intertwined, but the trading lead vocals highlights the fact that 35 years in and all of Fishbone's members fates are particularly interdependent. While they've all had successes with other projects in recent years, there's no denying the magic that happens when they're all in it together. But it's not all seriousness and multi-layered metaphors. “Kung Fu Grip” is the kind of goofy old school hardcore track the band once kicked out on the regular. The EP closes with the zydeco-tinged “Whipper Snapper (Remix),” but don't worry. This isn't some trend-chasing house mix; it's just a tweaked mix of their 2013 single “Whipper Snapper.” It's strange, fun, and catchy in all the ways Fishbone is supposed to be. In short, it's fucking great.
Fishbone is back, ladies and gents. We're proud to offer a free download of “Whipper Snapper (Remix).”