Sometimes some of the best punk music in the world comes from a dirty basement tucked away in a dark corner of a far off land. Mighty Midgets, a ‘melodic speed punk’ band from Aalborg, a university town in northern Denmark, is such a band. They have a small loyal following close to home, but North American punk connoisseurs will most likely follow your name dropping of them with a blank stare. Which is too bad, because Mighty Midgets are amazing. Melodic hardcore punk in the vein of No Trigger, Closet Monster. Even Comeback Kid, if they played their songs twice as fast. But Mighty Midgets are notable for another reason; giving birth to some of the finest folk punk I’ve heard in a long time.
Self described as a Danish folk punk screamer-songwriter band, Stöj Snak is the brain child of the Midgets’ guitarist/backing vocalist, Niels H. Sörensen. Sörensen is the sole official member of the band, though ‘Songs About Beliefs’, the band’s second release, features a handful of guest musicians on various tracks, helping to fill out the sound with everything from gritty distorted harmonica to banjo to organs to..is that a flute?
The quality singing abilities of Niels on ‘Songs’ is one of the highlights of the record, ripping on his vocal chords like he forgot he was singing folk songs and thought for a second this was another Midgets record. It’s unique and creates a fresh sounding dichotomy that reminds one of Frank Turner’s finer moments, with the passion dial turned up.
The lyrical content is your typical punk packaged mix of political outrage, laced with optimistic encouragement and a sprinkling of sarcasm. The urgency with which the words are delivered is what slips the hook in though.
‘Songs About Beliefs’ is an insanely catchy group of songs. ‘No Refunds’ in particular has not left my head since first hearing it three days ago. The great thing about Stöj Snak though is that having this group of songs bounce around in your cranium without rest all day is a pleasant side effect of the music, unlike, say, Mumford & Sons, which can burrow into your head like a parasite and lay its evil banjo eggs until you’re just about ready to scream.
I have little doubt that many of you will not have heard of this band, or their hardcore counterparts Mighty Midgets. If you’re going to take anything away from this review though, take this: you are missing out.
For just over a buck you can buy either of Stöj Snak’s EP’s, which, in their ‘Redux’ form have been beefed out with Niels rocking live versions of all the songs thrown in there for free.
Seriously dude, it’s like a buck and a quarter (minimum). They won’t even let you smell the coffee at Starbucks for that.