Yard Act: The Overload

Interesting, Edgy, and Humorous british punk banger

Rating: 4 out of 5.

Yard Act, comprising James Smith (vocals), Ryan Needham (bass), Sam Shjipstone (guitar) and Jay Russell (drums), is a Punk Rock gem from Leeds, United Kingdom. At 37 minutes in length and 11 tracks, their debut record The Overload is full of amusing and quick-witted lyricism, rowdy sound, and a stick it to the man theme.

The Overload album cover
  1. The Overload

Solid and bold start to a really epic debut album. Sounds like it was made to be a bank robbery chase scene song in the Baby Driver soundtrack. Gives the listener a sense of urgency and has an unforgettable catchy chorus. It has a disheveled attitude, but in a superb way. Lets you know real quick that this album is a middle finger to the man type of album. 

  1. Dead Horse

Takes a step back into a smooth and cool jam. It has a strut to it that makes you feel like the band had somewhere to be and a point to make while writing this one. Politics suck, we care about the wrong things, and government is the worst are all themes to this track. 

  1. Payday

Bongo sounding drums, flangy guitar, and a shaking beat. Not much to say about this one other than its another quick and steppy tune. Oh yeah…can’t go wrong when a song ends with some deep and rich synths.

  1. Rich

This track is a goofy one with some amazingly tongue and cheek lyrics. Simply about getting rich and gaining a whole new set of really stupid problems and losing sight of what is was like to not be rich. I like this one a lot. It’s a simple track through and through but makes a big statement.

  1. The Incident

James Smith brings quality flow on this track proving that he can weave in some interesting cadence and rhythm with his lyrical style. This is another gritty one that touches on themes of people in charge and big businesses not giving you the full picture of the bad that goes on behind the scenes.

  1. Witness (Can I Get A?)

Get yourself in a mosh pit, jump around, and bang your head to this one. It is a great high steppin transition for the halfway point of the record. It reminds me so much of Blitzkrieg Bob by The Ramones. Super fun. 

  1. Land Of The Blind

Bass-forward, cute plucky guitar, with some oddly demented backup vocals that for some reason sound like they came from The Nightmare Before Christmas. I love this one because it is about dumb people that are just wrapped up in themselves. One of my favorites for sure. Has a great outro sequence as well that leaves you pretty stoked for the next track.

  1. Quarantine The Sticks

Quick and choppy guitar riffs and another catchy chorus. Nothing spectacular or necessarily noteworthy on this one, just another solid tune.

  1. Tall Poppies

I’m a sucker for storytelling in music. This one checks all the boxes for me. The longest track on record, clocking in at 6 minutes and 21 seconds, Tall Poppies takes you through an entire life. It goes through a couple different stylistic changes and at one point sounds like you are listening to The Who (which is absolutely a good thing). I won’t spoil it, but this one alone makes the album worth a listen.

  1. Pour Another

This one sounds like a combination of Talking Heads and B-52s. Pretty spunky and exaggerated. This is definitely the low point of the record for me but it’s being put up against some other really great tracks.

  1. 100% Endurance

Calming and feel good closer to the record. This is a really nice change of pace from the f*** yourself attitude the rest of the record has. It’s almost like they wrote the whole album and got all of the shit that pissed them off out and then were like “oh…I guess all this doesn’t really matter…and life will carry on after we’re dead…okay…let’s make one more track”. It leaves the listener in a good place, even though it is definitely an unexpected end to an in-your-face kind of record.

Bottom line – This is a great album peppered with fun and witty lyrics, awesome musical composition, and meaningful themes. Don’t let the man get you down, and give this one a listen.

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