With a nostalgic ska-like ethos, Ohio band Bastard Friendly launches into their craft recklessly, sans the horns. On their EP “Lost in Translation”, there exists an aggressive energy that many bands attempt to imitate but fail to execute. It seems almost natural for the four men in Bastard Friendly, as they transition from yelped vocal choruses to crushing riffing sections, and remain convincing due to their sheer momentum. The band pulls out all the stops and dives headfirst into the give-no-shits aesthetic, complete with profane song titles reminiscent of grindcore songs. But beyond the superficial fringe, the music is just plain fun. Production-wise, “Lost in Translation” has a raw edge that lends itself well to the style of music being played; it’s lo-fi enough to add degrees of authenticity and harden the punches the band tries to throw. There are of course moments where Bastard Friendly overdoes it a little, such as the lyrics of “Angel of Excrement”, but when taken not-too-seriously, it’s almost charmingly disgusting.
Shamelessly brash, the Ohio quartet has crafted an enjoyable record, capable of eliciting both light chuckles and headbanging action. It’s short, packs a wallop, and heralds good things from the band, so long as they make minor songwriting refinements.