Get Stung is a new EP from HIVEKICKER, a Raleigh-based rock duo comprised of John Flude (Dragstrip Syndicate) and drummer John Crouch (Caltrop/Black Skies/Solar Halos). They describe their sound as being “fiercely rock’n’roll,” and indeed it is all that and more. Released on Boxer Face Records, this 3-track EP packs a solid punch. I swear, after reviewing so many hip hop, pop and R&P albums lately it’s refreshing to listen to something with this level of musical prowess, and which is in line with my own personal aesthetic sensibilities. Even the retro-inspired cover (modeled after the 1973 Topps football card design) adds to the tasteful ambiance.

The guitars are sleek, high energy and powerful, with the drums bulking up the mix nicely. These guys can really play their instruments. Guitar amp aficionados will appreciate the vintage/classic guitar tones, which many musicians spend years tinkering with gear in order to achieve. The shouty vocals are charismatic and surprisingly melodic, reminiscent of old school punk (before the “whiny” pop punk trend set in). HIVEKICKER’s music is loud and invigorating while maintaining its avant garde, indie credibility and never venturing into obnoxious “bro rock” territory. This little EP rules. Get Stung was mixed by Track and Field Recording owner, Nick Petersen (Bon Iver – For Emma) and was mastered by Carl Saff at Saff Mastering LLC.

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