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Cobra Skulls - Agitations Album Cover
Author's Rating
Vocals 8.25
Musicianship 9
Lyrics 8.5
Production 9
Creativity 7.25
Lasting Value 8.5
Reviewer Tilt 8.75
Final Verdict: 85%
Member Ratings
Vocals 10
Musicianship 10
Lyrics 10
Production 10
Creativity 10
Lasting Value 10
Reviewer Tilt 10
Average: 100%
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Cobra Skulls - Agitations

Reviewed by: Dre Okorley (09/21/11)
Cobra Skulls - Agitations
Release Date: September 27, 2011
Record Label: Fat Wreck Chords

Somewhere tangled in between the bramble and tumbleweed are the fist pumping shenanigans of Reno-bred Cobra Skulls. Their political canvas American Rubicon rhythm trotted, kicked dust particles haphazardly in the eye, and murmured Southern twangs under the blazing heat of a Nevada sun. But it littered itself with question marks, parching my throat for slightly more cohesive writing structures. And though bass wielding frontman Devin Peralta belted out the American banner in all of its red, white, and ashen glory, the rubicon of satiable hooks erected its camp in no man's land.

Yet through the cracks surfaced a mighty pedestal of an effort, that toppled Eisenhower's statue to the ground in duct taped shoe strings and hard-assed veneer. Agitations, the band's full-length Fat Wreck Chords debut, is just six degrees away from bringing us to our knees. Or so goes my DIY paraphrasing of the fiery but bouncy chorus of "Six Degrees"; it's that free spirited wildcat which craftily adds grain and texture to every punk melodrama, baring the teeth of the band's familiar Western smile for leapfrogging vocals.

The double-sided life of Agitations sneaks around, out and about. Peralta's vocal allure is a timbre two-step that pays tribute to the peppered lungs of Tom Gabel (Against Me!), but then flips into tempered vibratos. "The Mockery" peeks out temporarily to reveal its meek side, but suddenly gets hijacked by an old school punk diddy about a man out for hierarchical blood: "he drives by his old company/in an armored SUV/and he notes how they'd think/he's making a mockery", reassures ally Peralta.

"Drones" calls all hepcats, amidst plush tempos, jazzy chords, and kool kat whispers, adorning a cocked beret and a turtleneck. It's an intro curveball, but Cobra Skulls' master plan is simple: ease the listener into a state of leisure and ecstasy. Next, sketch a stockpile amount of "fuck you" diagrams to target every cutthroat industry and leave them at the listener's doorstep for dispersal. The package will be signed: "don't be a drone, be the hive." But of course, power can't just be handed to you. You have to follow through and fight the powers that be.

Between Peralta's gospel grooves that pop to the beat in "The Minimum", and the electrifying guitar lead in "Solastalgia" that strikes a similarity to Alkaline Trio's "Dethbed" intro but in higher key, lawless head banging would be a fitting response to the three piece's edgy takeover. Only acoustic closer, "Believe", will pick up the debris left over from 12 tracks of anarchy and then chuck it against the wind. Perhaps a mindless maneuver, but Cobra Skulls are "not trying to make you understand. [They're] just enjoying this while [they] can."

Agitations makes wrecking balls out of playground jacks in that it uses the same amount of destructive velocity as it does stimulate youth.


Recommended If You Like Against Me!, The Clash, Andrew Jackson Jihad, The Dead Milkmen

Additional InformationTracklisting:
1.Six Degrees
2. Iron Lung
3. Now You Know
4. The Mess
5. On & On
6. All Drive
7. Drones
8. The Mockery
9. Solastalgia
10. The Minimum
11. Hiding
12. Running Out
13. Believe

Cobra Skulls is:
Devin Peralta - vocals/bass
Adam Beck - guitar
Luke Ray - drums

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Displaying posts 1 - 9 of 9
10:08 PM on 09/21/11
I'm Only Here to Disappoint
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NickIsI's Avatar
I'll definitely check this out. Nice review!
05:10 AM on 09/22/11
Walking Is Still Honest
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brandnewsheep's Avatar
So excited for this album! Nice review :)
08:24 PM on 09/22/11
Dre Okorley
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Dre Okorley's Avatar
I'll definitely check this out. Nice review!
So excited for this album! Nice review :)

Thanks a lot, guys! You should check it out now, the album is streaming on their profile.
12:16 AM on 09/23/11
Regular Member
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sexcells's Avatar
good review! i love this band!!! excited to hear this full length....new drummer....new label....great band! come to az!!!!
04:05 AM on 09/23/11
Registered User
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No Avatar Selected
The Alkaline Trio song is called "Dethbed", just so you know. And I fail to hear the resemblance.
"Agitations" is a solid album. Good, but not great.
08:31 AM on 09/23/11
Dre Okorley
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Dre Okorley's Avatar
The Alkaline Trio song is called "Dethbed", just so you know. And I fail to hear the resemblance.
"Agitations" is a solid album. Good, but not great.
Thanks for the title correction. I dunno, I play guitar (10 years now) and I can hear the overlap, especially if I play it out note by note.

Agreed that it's good/solid.
12:24 PM on 09/23/11
Henry Ferreira
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Henry Ferreira's Avatar
This album must be real good. Good review, though.
12:21 AM on 10/09/11
Virtual Visor
Registered User
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No Avatar Selected
The Alkaline Trio song is called "Dethbed", just so you know. And I fail to hear the resemblance.
"Agitations" is a solid album. Good, but not great.
The resemblance is plain as day. Listen to the guitar refrain first heard around the 0:19 mark. ...Sound familiar? If not, well, I don't know what to say.
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