Title: Service to Your Country
Release: LP / Digital
Label: Social Napalm
Service to Your Country is the full-length vinyl debut of the Boston punk band Savageheads. Punks from all over the world have already fallen in love with their UK82-drenched sound that nods to classic punk bands like The Partisans, Skeptix, GBH, Abrasive Wheels, and even a little bit of The Exploited. Previous releases have included their 2013 demo tape, followed by the band’s killer self-titled EP, which was released on 7-inch vinyl in 2014. The last time we heard from Savageheads on record was in 2015, when they released the Live At The Chelmsford Acne House tape.
If you follow the US punk scene, you might recognize some of these four savage punx from bands like Bloodkrow Butcher, No Sir I Won’t, Male Nurses and Subclinix. This is the reason why I thought that the band was kind of on the back-burner for its already busy members, and even if they play a few shows here and there, we might never see any new recordings from them. Surprisingly, Social Napalm—which seems to be a new project by the people who run the Negative Insight zine and label—announced that Service To Your Country will be released in 2022. The album sold out instantly, and as I write about the record in March 2023, it’s only available on streaming platforms. It features 13 tracks, most of which are under two minutes long and all of them are rip-roaring punk rock bangers.
On these 13 tracks you’ll hear both newer Savageheads songs as well as nastier, better produced versions of some of our favorite songs from their demo and 7-inch records. As is often the case, the bands that manage to recreate and perfect the sound of the ’80s in its most authentic form get the most respect in the punk scene. I’ve read dozens of year-end lists for the best punk records of 2022, and Service to Your Country has been mentioned on every single one of them. There have been a lot of hardcore and Oi! bands with UK82 influences lately, but there aren’t that many pure UK82-sounding bands. So if you’re looking for a thunderous update to the definitive years of that specific scene, there’s a lot about Savageheads that will ring a bell. Without a doubt, Service to Your Country was one of the best punk records of 2022.