Texas platters

Phases and Stages


The Jungle Science e.p. In a gag audio clip on Balistica's debut EP, an interviewer describes these Austinites as "a sonic, punk outfit." Then comes the kicker: "Why did you guys leave the sombreros at home?" One only hopes that was a gag! In any event, the name Balistica says it all – insolent, urgent, snarky as necessary, and urban in an architectural rather than cultural sense. Aching limbs of steel, the hot shudder of concrete, the false sparkle of glass, and every once in a while, the sweet breath from a patch of green all emanate from The Jungle Science's 20-minute run time. "Rag" opens the disc with a deceptively mellow riff that leaps into an industrial grind churning with rock & roll rhythms. The kiss and slap lyrics ("Your adoration sets me free. It's like a razor, it cuts me deep ... you know I want it so") end in a raw punk rant, strangely lightened with a familiar Arab-world vocal riff sailing over it all near the end. The previously mentioned audio clip follows, slipping into the liquid, Dick Dale-like guitar opening of "Hard to Swallow," where relentless punk rhythms tumble with a ripped vocal driven beat. "Racer" is the most popilicious of the disc, amazingly elevating the timeless pop phrase "doot-dooty-doot" to a tolerable level. An insistent brew of punk-driven, moody rock rhythms demanding to be heard finish off the disc. The demand is well worth heeding. Sombreros? Balistica don't need no stinkin' sombreros.


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