Following on from my previous two Aussie Punk reviews comes number three. This time around we are in the hands of Wollongong’s “The Culture Industry”, and with a moniker like that, I’m guessing a political slant? A quick scour of YouTube confirms my suspicions – these guys pen songs about “real life” maaaan!

And so we have their latest single “141” which I’m reliably informed is centered around “life’s crossroads” and which path to take. Describing themselves as Grunge/Punk this features heavily on this single. The intro is a culture clash between dirty bass and scratchy guitars – the bass wins the day and continues to throb throughout. Lead vocalist Gnarly (somewhat apt) delivers a (s)narly, nasty vocal throughout – I just can’t decide if it’s HCX Punk or Horror Punk?! A brief spoken word verse speeds up as the intensity grows into a speedball fury. I’m reminded of Dead Kennedys at their angriest or The Threats (for Scottish observers)! The verses are largely indecipherable yet the choruses get the message across in a clear and audible (yet angry) fashion. The twisted chords towards the end are great and really suit the overall feel of the song. Angry, angsty, and in yer face – what all great Punk/Grunge is meant to be right?

The Culture Industry

The Culture Industry clearly have an agenda and are taking in their surroundings for song influences, ‘Dying in the Streets’ being a fine example. However, their videos would suggest an element of fun to be had too. I guess if they are to take the giant leap from ‘hometown heroes’ they need to get a few foreign festival appearances under their belts. But as an introduction, this is a decent start point.


Review by Ross A. Ferrone

The Culture Industry