Oi! Upstarts Crown Court Will Save Us From Ourselves
The U.K.’s not a very happy place right now. It might be make out the country’s screams here in the States (what with a certain hairpiece-wearing Presidential hopeful’s incessant, incendiary chatter hogging the airwaves and all), but in the wake of Brexit and the Syrian refugee crisis, amidst the surge of nationalist movements sweeping the globe, England now faces a collective identity crisis. What is a country, even? What does it mean to be British, or European, and how does that impact the rest of the world’s perception? But these concerns aren’t just political or economic. They’re critical in how we perceive British art as well — especially punk, one of the nation’s most significant cultural exports — and more importantly, an art form that never takes its finger off the political pulse. Bad apples notwithstanding, the Oi! community’s got particularly strong ties to progressive, working-class ideals; in other words, the street punks can’t stay on the sidelines.
That’s where Crown Court, the world’s premier Oi! upstarts, come in. Since forming in 2014, these unsuspectingly catchy hardcore kids have released two 7”s and stormed stages throughout their native London and beyond, powered by a dual mastery of thunderous, Sham 69-style riffage and stabby pub rock. Now they’re going global: Brooklyn-based Katorga Works just released Crown Court’s awesome self-titled LP, which you can stream below along with the band’s self-released 7” Ruck and Roll. Nigel Farage should be very, very afraid; we, on the other hand, are very, very lucky.