Hooligan ‘Criminal Damage’ (EP) – review


Hooligan ‘Criminal Damage’ (EP) (Oi The Boat Records)
Apr 2014

The fourth EP from Ireland’s punk-rockers Hooligan is the most accomplished in the band’s catalogue to date. Criminal Damage features a whole range of talent including Cockney Rejects’ Van Frater on guitar and bass; Decca Wade and Nicky Buck (original and latter Angelic Upstarts) on drums; while Wade and Mond Cowie (another Upstart) share the production duties.

A sense of real togetherness on this EP stems from the band members’ chemistry and their love for making punk-edged old-school rock music. Dave Linehan confidently leads Hooligan from the front on four brand-new tracks, which benefit most notably from some impressive guitar work and backing vocals from the musicians accompanying him.

The heavy, sing-a-long punk-rock jams that Hooligan excels in making are at their most defining here. The irony-ridden title track screams “Criminal damage/ It’s against the law!” to rousing effect; while ‘Street Punk Hero’ is a true punk anthem for those modern-day everymen living and keeping the culture alive.

By the time the EP reaches track three, ‘Bastards’, it becomes most obvious that the Hooligan guys are having a lot of fun on Criminal Damage. Linehan and Frater’s guitars face-off frantically and sound more and more impressive as the track plays on; while ‘Keep The Faith’ has plenty of accessible “woahhh ohhhhhs” to maintain the feel-good nature of the record.

There are two, separate releases of Criminal Damage this month: A stand-alone 7″ on Oi The Boat Records in beer-coloured/black; and a rare edition for record store day (April 19th) titled Under One Flag. To those looking for music reminiscent of punk’s golden era, that still sounds fresh and innovative: Give thanks by buying the vinyl and supporting the scene.


Hooligan’s music can be found here HERE. The group is also on Facebook HERE.

All words by Andy Carrington. More writing by Author’s Name can be found at his author archive. Be sure to also check out his website, too.

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