3TARDS, THE: Crystal Balls: CD
'Crystal Balls' is the latest album by one of Canada’s most popular up and coming punk bands, who have recently sold out several clubs during the album release parties for this record in their native city of Toronto. The 3Tards sound pretty much as any band with such a name would sound, and combine rocking punk with hilarious lyrics which verge on the ridiculous most of the time. The album starts off with a big metal style build up, conjuring up images of guys with make-up and huge hair like something from 1986, then 'Stuck on You' kicks in. Luckily for us, it is still 2006 and world meet the 3Tards. I was baffled by the title of 'Big Dog, Little Dick', but the tale of how singer John Tard likes his Canines sets the tone for the rest of the album and is good dumb fun. His vocals are instantly recognizable. This guy is not going to win any contests for best singer, but that just wouldn’t be punk now, would it ? His crazed vocal sound is perfect for the music. It has a real 80’s US hardcore punk feel to it, but instead of being driven by pure anger it is more like it is being driven by pure insanity, combined with a few too many narcotics. Songs like 'Knife to a Gunfight' straddle a line between hardcore punk and 80’s metal, which works as a great combination here. This is a good fun album , but. unlike other “comedy bands”, 3Tards do not just rely on funny lyrics; 'Crystal Balls' rocks with the best of them.
Adrian Huggins