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When you first listen to Massive Wagon you feel like you’re being brought back in time to the 80’s British punk wave scene. They bring back the best qualities of punk and add a modern day flare to it.
While to metal heads, Massive Wagon is indeed “massive” especially in their hometown of Canforth in the northwest of England. They are so big that loyal fans organized a mural to be painted on a wall in the nearby town of Lancaster, now that’s dedication!
Full Nelson is the bands fourth full-length studio album. Following Fire It Up (2012), Fight the System (2014), and Welcome to the World (2016). The newest addition to the bands discography was released on August 10, 2018 on Earache Records.
The album starts off with “Under No Illusion,” and there is no illusion that Massive Wagon have one impression album on their hands. With lyrics that start off, “We’re singing to you, sing back to me” frontman Baz Mills lays out an impressive marker for the rest of the album.
“China Plates” follows which is a damning indictment of Facebook, but produced in such an intelligent way and a catchy way at that, that the clever composition of the message is a track that listeners will go back to again and again. The track also has suggestive vocals from Baz, in that they sound similar to that of The Offsprings frontman, Dexter Holland. And there are plenty of power behind said vocals.
The theme of social commentary continues with track “”Billy Balloon” which takes on racism and general intolerance in today’s politically charged society. Other tracks like “Northern Boy” which is not quite a ballad, but it is slower than other tracks with rhythmic guitar, melancholic lyrics and emotional guitar riffs. The song tells the tale of a wooing class family from the north of England.
“Robot (Trust in Me)” is a bit out of the box for Massive Wagon and sounds like something from the band The Offspring. The track reminiscent of something from the Smash days’ punky, slightly aggressive and threatening.
Back to the rock n’ roll sounds for "Back to the Stack” and the bands tribute to the late Rick Parfitt. The entire track underpinned by the classic “Caroline” riff and Status Quo reference.
“Ballad of Verdun Hayes” has a similar sound to that of Kaiser Chiefs, but the song itself looks at lives constricted by rules and what can be achieved if you just bend those roles and do what you want. Verdun Hayes, was the oldest person to skydive at 101 years old and a D-Day Vet. Now thats someone that doesn't believe in the definition of conformity.
The last two tracks “Ratio” and “Tokyo” are tracks that makes you want to listen on repeat, sing-along, and play air guitar all at once. With great and catchy lyrics along with great guitar riffs.
What a lot of these songs have in common is the that feeling of being a part of the music, like you’re in a concert watching them live. This feeling has been forgotten by many artists and bands where and Massive Wagon not only bring to back into a time of historic music events but also make you want to join in on the musical experience, not just an outsider listening. Massive Wagon deserve to be bigger than just to a niche audience and in their hometown, but to a worldwide audience. Because they truly bring out the best qualities in music and in their fans.