If you like it fast and furious but don’t want to go to your local Cineplex flea-pit to catch the latest movie in a shitty franchise, then Honningbarna’s Verden er Enkel might be the album you’ve been looking for.
On paper, Honningbarna don’t exactly sound like an anarchy-inducing prospect. They’re a five-piece that hail from the fjords of Norway; their name roughly translates to Honey Children; they’re barely out of their teens and look it; their frontman-child always wears a blue v-neck jumper when gigging, and he plays the cello. So far, nothing to trouble the Richter scale, but if you’re lucky enough to have caught Honningbarna live, then you can testify to the fire, fury and ferocity that these cherubic noiseniks bring to the stage.
From the “3, 2, 1” intro of the opening track ‘Dødtid’ to the shout-out chorus of the closing ‘Gi oss Kick’, the pace is blistering and relentless. 13 tracks in 32 minutes, there’s no faffing about here; it’s straight down to business – balls-to-the-wall, kick-out-the-jams, motherfuckin’ rock n roll. It’s the sweet, sweet sound of the speedball of the holiest of all of rock’s sacred trinities – youth, rebellion and anarchy.
Their twin guitar attack hits you in the face like a beautiful punch planted on your kisser, while the driving drum and bass deliver a series of swift kicks to your nether regions. As your senses are still reeling and trying to recover, Edvard Valberg’s delivers his message to your cerebral cortex with a white heat intensity that would melt a setting sun. Jarvis, you were wrong, this is hardcore.
Betimes, some of the guitar work sounds more metal than punk to this auld dog’s ears, but it never loses the call-to-arms feel that’s central to punk’s sound and ideology. They’ve also managed to capture the intensity of their live performance, so hats off to Swedish producer Pelle Gunnerfeldt for bottling that most mercurial of things.
It’s going to be a hard sell for these chaps as they will only sing in Norweigan. In true punk spirit, they consider singing in English to be a compromise, and these boys don’t do compromise. This is our loss because I’d love to know what they are raging against but you’ve got to respect their stance.
In an increasingly sanitised and homogeneous world, it’s good to see that it doesn’t all have to be hollow rebel yells and empty posturing. Anyway, enough of the yakking, as the Honey Children tell us themselves, it’s time to ‘Fuck Kunst (Dans Dans)’ – or fuck art and dance, dance if you haven’t gotten the hand of the Nordic yet.