The Union Electric
The Union Electric’s fusion of folk structures and punk dynamics isn’t exactly unprecedented, but the three songs that comprise the band’s debut EP are still refreshing in the way they transcend Americana clichés, incorporating saw-toothed guitars and a history-savvy, D. Boon-style political bent. “Sentence” is an obvious highlight, hewing closer to the “punk” side of the equation and playing like a Southern-fried Come On Pilgrim outtake. But the pitch-black sea chantey “Ship Out of Luck” is probably the best showcase for the band’s style — frontman Tim Rakel (awesomely billed as “Tim Rakehell” on the EP’s sleeve) delivers the lyrics in a braying snarl that dovetails nicely with guitarist Glenn Burleigh’s caterwauling leads. Even if “You Have Been Served” is less distinguished, the EP still manages to succeed on the strength of the band’s winning mix of irreverence and righteous indignation.