F. Emasculata are an X-Files-themed hardcore punk band from Cornwall. Being able to write a sentence like that is one of the reasons I love punk; there’s always fun to be had with a good gimmick. The band return with their second mini album IAXFE and it’s another collection of ten thoroughly angry yet bizarrely hook-ridden songs.
The four oiks in F. Emasculata deal in snotty, lairy vocals and short bursts of vicious riffs and while their style isn’t particularly original, they pull it off with all the piss and vinegar you could ask for. It’s hard work making punk in this day and age and even harder work sounding original but F. Emasculata understand this, so to make up for it they stuff as many riffs into these fifteen minutes as possible.
The riffs are what really make F. Emasculata work. There’s a huge skate-punk influence running through the guitar work on IAXFE and despite the aggression, there’s plenty of great melodies to pump your fist to. It’s like listening to Bad Religion but with vocals more reminiscent of The Exploited.
When F. Emasculata are at their best they’re marrying these catchy, punk riffs with moments of unbridled fury like on Little Green Man and EBE. This diversity makes F. Emasculata’s music unpredictable yet memorable, which is exactly what you want from a modern punk record.
Despite how well the music is constructed, F. Emasculata still suffer from overfamiliarity. As we’ve already mentioned, being a punk band in this day and age is incredibly hard work thanks to how tried and tested the formula is and while F. Emasculata make all the right sounds, they’re gimmick isn’t unique enough to add something new to the genre.
Regardless, F. Emasculata have added another collection of furious punk anthems to their arsenal and they’re delivered through gritted teeth and bountiful aggression. If you’re a fan of punk then F. Emasculata’s IAXFE should be a record you should seriously be considering adding to your collection, but you might find a certain familiarity creeping in.